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Hitler's Peace

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  1,841 ratings  ·  151 reviews
Autumn 1943. Since Stalingrad, Hitler has known that Germany cannot win the war. The upcoming Allied conference in Teheran will set the ground rules for their second front-and for the peace to come. Realizing that the unconditional surrender FDR has demanded will leave Germany in ruins, Hitler has put out peace feelers. (Unbeknownst to him, so has Himmler, who is ready to ...more
Paperback, 464 pages
Published August 1st 2006 by G.P. Putnam's Sons (first published May 19th 2005)
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Average rating 3.91  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,841 ratings  ·  151 reviews


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Paromjit
Mar 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Philip Kerr once again writes of WW2, a topic and time period he is extraordinarily well acquainted with, this time without the canny Bernie Gunther, in this standalone historical thriller set in 1943. The mood in Berlin is bleak, acknowledging that they are facing certain defeat, the Allied bombing of Berlin and Germany is taking its toll, and Stalingrad underlines the catastrophic failure of the Germans on the Eastern front. In this blend of fact, fiction and faction, Hitler and his senior Naz ...more
David Lowther
Mar 31, 2014 rated it really liked it
A load of thoroughly entertaining rubbish, the literary equivalent of Tarantino's brilliant movie Inglorious Basterds.

Philip Kerr is one of the very best writers of Nazi Germany stories, some set before the war, others during it and the rest after it. They all have one thing in common; the presence of champion cynic policeman Bernie Gunther. The main character in Hitler's Peace, Willard Mayer, is not Bernie but pretty tough, considering he's been seconded from his job as a philosophy teacher at
...more
Rowena Hoseason
Apr 24, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020
Fans of Philip Kerr’s Berlin noir series might be surprised by this standalone story – it’s most definitely not a Bernie Gunther-style thriller. It’s a rigorously researched historical novel with a fictional intrigue woven around actual events and real people. Don't expect a page-turning espionage adventure – because what you get is a metric tonne of names, ranks and historical references.

The story switches from an American professor who’s called upon to investigate atrocities that may have happ
...more
Bibliophile
What if Adolf Hitler had offered the Allies a negotiated peace in 1943? That is the premise of Philip Kerr's Hitler's Peace; unfortunately, the novel doesn't live up to its fascinating premise. The main character is an insufferable womanizing know-it-all with none of the charm or sly wit of Kerr's great Berlin detective, Bernie Gunther. Moreover, Hitler's motivations for seeking peace after the debacle of Stalingrad are never fleshed out and whatever Kerr does posit doesn't seem very believable, ...more
Toni Osborne
May 20, 2013 rated it really liked it
I am a huge fan of this author since my introduction to the Bernie Gunther series some time ago. I simply could not stay there waiting for the next installment so why not backtrack and “Hitler’s Peace” became my preferred choice.

This is briskly paced and a sharp standalone spy thriller set in 1943 when Hitler and his advisors see that they are losing the war and unconditional surrender is out of the question. Hitler and his advisers then work on a secret plan to manipulate the Allies to turn th
...more
Michel
Sep 04, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: war, hist-fic, lit
After 2 chapters, I wanted to give it 4-stars, later I was giving 5-stars, but then, the last 3 chapters, well, I don't want to spoil it for anybody, let's just say I couldn't suspend disbelief any longer. Some of the things that happen here just could have happened, with intermediaries, but not with the main protagonists; and just too much is attributed to one obscure 3rd tier Oss analyst…
This being said, Kerr is topgun when it comes to research! What he doesn't know about nazi Germany, or WWII
...more
Tom
Mar 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
Not really such great writing; but perfectly interesting. Hard to put up with novelization of these characters (I just had dinner with Adolf!), but I understand much is factual, so, on I go ... .
Turned out to be perfectly interesting. Three interesting plots going on, the "hero" becomes more and more interesting, and the places and people are certainly very interesting. Worthwhile. Very.
...more
Phil Shaw
Oct 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Simply brilliant. Didn't want to put it down. I havent read a Philip Kerr book that I haven't thoroughly enjoyed. I find his style easy and fun to read. The humour in his books appeals to me greatly. 'Hitler's Peace" was no exception, and will definitely go onto my - read it again sometime - shelf. ...more
John M.
Dec 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
A realistic and compelling read, although a tad overwritten. Mr. Kerr's edit0rs could have done a better job of cutting superfluous details. ...more
Robert Ronsson
Feb 02, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As a fan of Kerr's Bernie Gunther books I was very pleased to discover this novel that was first published in 2006. The edition I read was issued after Kerr's death last year. Hitler's Peace is a fantastical piece of 'what-if' writing centred on the 1943 'Big Three' Teheran summit between Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin. The preposterous plot (pun intended) is made credible by Kerr's excellent writing and, as in all his books, is underpinned by meticulous research.
Some writers, notably in this g
...more
Wilde Sky
Various peace negotiations and plots take place in 1943.

The writing was good, as were the characters but there was too much name dropping and simply far too many plot jumps / coincidences.

Reading time around nine hours.

Miss R
Apr 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thanks to Quercus Books and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

The late Philip Kerr was an author of inimitable talent in the field historical fiction and will be sadly missed. 'Hitler's Peace', is yet another example of Kerr's astonishing ability to take historical 'truth', and re-fashion it into something new, and utterly absorbing. All the hallmarks of Kerr's greatness are present here, too. If you thought Kerr's legendary Bernie Gunther series of books were classic example
...more
Herbert Lasky
Dec 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Creative fictional history

Mr Kerr had a firm grasp of German history. His fiction is both thought provoking and entertaining. His ability to use real events and people to spin a griping yarn is striking.
Aoife
I usually very much enjoy Phillip Kerr’s books. I loved his Berlin Noir trilogy when I first read it a long time back and I’m a big Bernie Gunther fan.
This book I also enjoyed but not to the same extent. It is set during WWII which is an era I think he writes particularly well about. However Prof Mayer I found a little irritating, or at least his internal monologue. I did find aspects of this book really interesting but the American perspective didn’t really work for me. The last 20% or so of t
...more
Bob Hurley
Nov 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Who was there?

This book centres around the meeting of Roosevelt, Churchill & Stalin in Tehran. This meeting presented an opportunity for Germany to kill one or more of the triumvirate that opposed Germany. The book is written viewed from all sides with some interesting viewpoints expressed by all. Yet again Philip Kerr challenges you on your thoughts of Germany and views of its role during the second world war. Well written and factually detailed it leaves you with one final thought, "Did it hap
...more
Frederic
Aug 16, 2010 rated it did not like it
Dull,prolix and unbelievable...with a climactic summit meeting of WWII leaders that is sketched so superficially that neither the historical nor fictional figures have any breadth or depth...a major disappointment from Philip Kerr,whose Berlin Noir trilogy was so compelling on many levels...
Styron Powers
Nov 10, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Disappointing- Poorly Written, with a difficult flow. I finished 50% and put it aside. For most of my life, I finished books, even if I disliked the book. Now, I no longer waste the reading time. Unfortunately, I did waste the money.
Leigh Van Sickle
Jan 07, 2018 rated it liked it
I had to stop somewhere in the middle. It’s tedious, especially compared to Kerr’s Bernie Gunther series. I know Kerr is generally amazingly historically accurate, so I was taken aback by his use of Disney’s Princess Aurora, who was in Sleeping Beauty in 1959, not in the Forties.
Wendy
Nov 29, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf
Too complicated and boring.
Andrea Hickman Walker
Sep 10, 2010 rated it did not like it
Shelves: history, war, fiction
This has the potential to be fantastic, but I found the style incredibly boring.
Dawn
Apr 26, 2013 rated it did not like it
Hard to read. Like reading a manual.
Mary Warnement
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Pirate
Oct 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: World War II, thriller lovers, whodunnits too.
Willard Mayer a quick-witted philosopher turned OSS agent yes there was an era pre Bernie Gunther for the wonderful late Philip Kerr and thank heavens this has appeared to sate the sense of loss for his far too early departure from this world. This is also a fascinating read and very much a case of what ifs or did it really happen based round the strange choice of Teheran for the meeting of the Big Three -- that is on the Allies side -- FDR, Churchill and Stalin -- I refuse to address that monst ...more
M. Sprouse
Oct 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018
This is not so much a alternative history as an explanation of what possibly could have happened at the Big Three's Tehran Conference of 1943. Philip Kerr, as usual, does a masterful job making history come alive particularly the Nazis. When reading Kerr one gets a feel that these Nazis were actually human. But humans who headed down the path to evil by making a series of terrible choices, turning a blind eye and rationalizing evil. An object lesson for any time period.

"Hitler's Peace" is a goo
...more
Evelyn
Feb 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
With Philip Kerr gone, and just one more Bernie Gunther book remaining in the pipeline, I was pleased to find this at a used bookstore near my home.

It can be argued that in some ways the hero of this book, Professor Willard Mayer, is, to some degree, something of an American version of Gunther. He's a complicated, canny individual who's generally one step ahead of those around him, with a somewhat checkered past, some of which he'd like to keep hidden.

Mayer's father was Jewish, his mother very
...more
Greville Waterman
Mar 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The late and much lamented Philip Kerr could have written out the names and numbers from the telephone book and still made them sound interesting - he was that great a writer.

Like so many others, I loved his Bernie Gunther series so I thought that I would delve into his back catalogue and came across this 2005 second world war what-if thriller.

The storyline has been dissected to death elsewhere so I will not repeat it or provide spoilers. All I will say is that all the leading characters from Na
...more
David Cutler
Feb 08, 2021 rated it really liked it
Another typically gripping WW2 page tuner from the master Philip Kerr.

His hero Willard for this stand-alone , sort of alternative history, the philosopher Willard is rather less captivating and convincing than Bernie Gunther, the German detective in most of his novels. And your reaction will also depend on the cavalier interweaving of real life characters from Kim Philby to Roosevelt with the main fictional characters. Kerr gives as fact deeply speculative - and unlikely - tales such Hitler’s ha
...more
Clare
Feb 02, 2021 rated it liked it
I wanted to like this more; I'm a big fan of Bernie Gunther, and sad that there will be no more books telling the story of his complex life. This is a standalone alternative history take on a segment of WW2. However, I wasn't particularly attracted to the fictional characters in this book, although I quite enjoyed the premise and the snapshot portraits of the real characters were good, from Roosevelt to Stalin. The story started rather slowly, I felt, but it picked up, and became quite tense tow ...more
Kate
May 08, 2020 rated it liked it
It's pure coincidence that I read and finished this on the 75th anniversary of peace in Europe. Honestly, I'm going through stacks of unread books at home and whilst this was supposed to be my year of the female authors, it's turning out to be the complete opposite and then some. Recently I facilitated a virtual, corona lockdown- themed book club meeting and discounted the theme of "alternate realities" from among those I thought would be good conversation starters. But if I'd kept it, this book ...more
John Kaye
May 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
The last new Philip Kerr I'll read, having missed it's earlier US publication. And while not his best, and very slow to get going, but then read at pace, in the end it was an absorbing and nicely plotted thriller. I thoroughjly enjoyed many of the characterisations, and the splendid detail that significantly enriched the book for me. Sometimes this felt a little shoe-horned in, by hey, it's Philip Kerr, and while it's never so obvious in his Bernie Gunther works, it is a staple in the other hist ...more
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Philip Kerr was a British author. He was best known for his Bernie Gunther series of 13 historical thrillers and a children's series, Children of the Lamp, under the name P.B. Kerr.

Librarian’s note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name.
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