Anna Dahlberg grew up eating dinner under her father’s war-trophy portrait of Eva Braun. Fifty years after the war, she discovers what he never did—that her mother and Hitler’s mistress were friends. The secret surfaces with a mysterious monogrammed handkerchief, and a man, Hannes Ritter, whose Third Reich family history is entwined with Anna’s. Plunged into the world of the “ordinary” Munich girl who was her mother’s confidante—and a tyrant’s lover—Anna finds her every belief about right and wrong challenged. With Hannes’s help, she retraces the path of two women who met as teenagers, shared a friendship that spanned the years that Eva Braun was Hitler’s mistress, yet never knew that the men they loved had opposing ambitions. Eva’s story reveals that she never joined the Nazi party, had Jewish friends, and was credited at the Nuremberg Trials with saving 35,000 Allied lives. As Anna’s journey leads back through the treacherous years in wartime Germany, it uncovers long-buried secrets and unknown reaches of her heart to reveal the enduring power of love in the legacies that always outlast war.
I received a kindle copy of this book from Ms. Ring several weeks ago. She was quite gracious and I was pleased to read her novel. I have to say that I don’t know much about Eva Braun, except for an occasional wondering of what she could have seen in A.H. I have also wondered if she knew the extent of the atrocities he committed.
This novel moves back and forth from present day (Anna) and to Eva’s time (with Anna’s mother). I have to say that I enjoyed the WWII time period better than the present day. The book has what I assume to be real pictures of Eva Braun and lots of details about her life, especially her life before A.H. and her family life. It was interesting, but I still can’t say I liked Eva, as I really can’t believe that she was innocent of supporting their cause. To be honest, Anna was a bit trying to me, as she always seemed a bit meek and helpless. I wanted her to stand up to her tyrant husband, or to make some sort of stand for herself. She was rather overwhelmed and while I wanted to feel sorry for her, I sometimes felt annoyed.
Perhaps Anna and Eva are in parallel?
Thank you for my e-copy, Ms. Ring!