This Terrible Beauty: A Novel
On the windswept shores of an East German island, Bettina Heilstrom struggles to build a life from the ashes. World War II has ended, and her country is torn apart. Longing for a family, ...more
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Giveaway dates: Feb 01 - Feb 29, 2020
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Katrin Schumann, author of "This Terrible Beauty has written a captivating, intriguing, intense and thought-provoking novel. The Genres for this novel are Historical Fiction and Fiction. The timeline for this story is set after World War Two in the 1950s and 1960's when Germany is divided and goes to the past and future when it pertains to the characters or events. The story takes place ...more
I always enjoy historical novels. This one is no exception. It goes from the present in Chicago in 1965 to 1935 in Germany with Bettina as it's main character. She lived a lonely life with a husband she didn't love but found a teacher who she did love. She ends up having an affair with him and has a daughter. Who's daughter? We never find out. When her husband finds out, it's either her leaving Germany w/out her ...more
The writing of this novel was a worthwhile activity as it is a reflection of what can happen to any country or to anyone who truly gives up freedom. Be it giving up freedoms to a more pervasive government in our lives or to a more dominant person, we see in this novel the devastation it causes to the soul of the country and/or the soul of a person. This is an absolutely beautiful love story. But for me it is more a love ...more
This story of a woman in Germany after WWII is told from, mostly, the standpoint of her life after the Russians take over. She is newly married at the time just after the war and her life is changed from a Nazi regime rapidly to that of Soviet Russian dominance.
The plot reverts from the late 1960's Chicago where Bettina ultimately immigrates and the 1940's as she flashes back to what brought her there. The man she married in Germany near the end of the war and her ...more
What an incredible book! It was hard for me to lay it down before finishing it. This is an incredible story of human worth, love, survival and hope. It is the story of Bettina, a young woman caught in the crosshairs of Germany during and after Hitler's assault on Europe. It is a story of despair and of love, of loneliness and heartbreak, of joy and faith. I felt I was sharing Bettina's life, living it alongside her as she struggled with loss and feeling entrapped; finding joy in that old ...more
It was hard to put this one down. The writer created such vivid characters and landscapes that I could see/feel while reading this.
As a Westerner I was very young when the wall was built overnight. My son’s were young teenagers when it was finally taken down. I knew of some of the hardships for families so abruptly separated. I was aware of the ‘reports’ that people would make on their neighbors. How sad to have live in a society where you can never truly ...more
I didn't quite know what to expect when I chose this book to read this month. I read about half of it and set it aside for a week thinking I'd finish it eventually. If it had been more compelling i would have finished it sooner. It wasn't. Bettina's adultery was in fact unforgivable. She hid it from her husband and got what she deserved. A lonely single life was deserved. Her getting her former lover back was inappropriate and confounding. He should have been sent to hard labor or ...more
Not being a history buff, I certainly gained a lot of insight as to what occurred in Germany and the horror, the ones that survived, were forced to endure! Bettina had the stamina and drive to make a new life for herself. The ultimate prize was returned to her through Werner and the compromise they made to accomplish this. Keep up the wonderful writing Ms. Schumann!
Martin Schumann does a beautiful job in her description of life after World War II. She adds her fictional ideas of a love story, a marriage, of a mother, of a wife of a man she did not love. She travels to through US, makes a life. The story has surprise, insurmountable obstacles; but in the end, wisdom takes over, and firm judgments are made.
I started this book with questions about whether it would hold my interest. Amazingly, once I started reading, I could not put it down. What a wonderfully researched story this is! I learned so much during my reading, surprising myself because I have read so many books about things that occurred during WWII. This is a "must read" book. I cannot wait to read more of Katrin Schumann's wonderful books! BRAVO!!!!
Katrin Schumann's latest novel, This Terrible Beauty, holds the reader's attention from the very beginning to its last page. The characters lives and the twisting plot within East Berlin create an experience you will never forget. Reading This Terrible Beauty is a literary journey you will treasure forever!
Each Chapter ended with you wondering what will happen. So with a bit of mystery, a bit of history, a love story, who could ask for more??????
The author weaves tales that are poignant and heart-breaking at the same time. Learning about how Germany was affected after WW2 and the Berlin Wall was used to divide them was eye-opening. Teaches us to embrace our democracy and freedoms.
Bettina, Werner and Peter try to rebuild their lives after the brutality of WWIi. Can they survive and find love and happiness? Bettina has such great inner strength. Werner just wants to be loved. Peter has suffered the death of his wife and son.
Melodramatic...where the bad guys are really bad but the good guys are rather insipid. Good lord you can just hear the corny accents dripping in evil German & Russian pastiche. Nevertheless was I relieved when the lovers were finally reunited...perhaps.
This Terrible Beauty tells the story of love and loss during and after war. It paints a picture of Germany before and after the war . It takes the reader on a journey where war brings people together and tears others apart. What a wonderful read!
Being German I have met persons who encountered terrible atrocities in East German prisons. Thank goodness that is all in the past now.
It was hard to put the book down. I hope to read more by Katrin Schumann in the future.