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Berlin Noir: March Violets, The Pale Criminal, A German Requiem Paperback – 19 September 2012
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- Publisher : Penguin (General UK); 1st edition (19 September 2012)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 880 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0241962358
- ISBN-13 : 978-0241962350
- Dimensions : 12.95 x 4.06 x 19.81 cm
- Best Sellers Rank: 66,241 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the Author
Philip Kerr was born in Edinburgh and read Law at university. He stayed on to read Law and Philosophy as a postgraduate, most of this German, which was when he first became interested in German twentieth century history.
He worked first as a copywriter at a number of advertising agencies, including Saatchi & Saatchi, but spent most of his time researching an idea he'd had for a novel about a Berlin-based policeman. And following several trips to Germany - and a great deal of walking around mean streets of Berlin - his first novel, March Violets, was published in 1989 and introduced the world to the iconic tough-talking detective Bernie Gunther.
Since then he has written and published ten universally lauded Bernie Gunther novels, and is currently working on his eleventh. He has won both the RBA International Prize for Crime Writing, and the CWA Ellis Peters Historic Crime Award.
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The first book is the best of the three. The second is okay but has too familiar a story set-up, and the third loses much of its force because it lacks the Nazi backdrop.
I didn’t dislike these books but didn’t find them compelling – nor see how others could find them compelling, really. They are okay. I don’t feel a particular urge to buy more, but will if and when I can’t find anything more enticing.
I’d recommend these books to noir fans, thriller fans, historical fans and literary fans. They really are that good.
Anyway, I highly recommend these. Try them and make up your own mind - yes, they are well worth trying.
He is not an anti-hero, as others havr marked him. Not unless you need yours clad in skin-tight lycra sporting a cape. Bernie Gunther is the kind of hero we probably wish we could be; soiled, slightly gnarled, but with a stubborness, and a dog-eared set of principles.
The historic detail is recounted with the same level of precision as Bernie Gunther's character. Woven together forming and informing a 3D world to immerse yourself in. So if you get nothing else out of Philip Kerr's novels, you'll be better historically informed.
The plots are well conceived but it just gets a bit over-wrought at times. The open-ness of the first book works very well: a device Kerr all but abandons thereafter.
Overall: an entertaining read. The first book is by far the best.