Registered by KenseyRiver of Brightlingsea, Essex United Kingdom on 3/10/2006
Released to celebrate World Book Day and the fact that I am moving house again (which is nearly an annual event!).
Thanks KenseyRiver - this (and 1 other Pocket Penguin 70) had hardly left your hands before I snaffled them away. I'm working my way through the series, so these are welcome additions to-be-read in between meatier fayre :)
A fascinating little book about the last days of the ‘1000 year’ empire of the 3rd Reich and Hitler’s demise, as seen from the perspective of the isolated community in the Berlin bunker. This group of sycophants, aides, families & minor officials become increasingly detached from the desperate rear-guard action of the German forces, progressively losing contact with the remnants of the armies in the East & West, and finally losing any sense of loyalty, moral certitude or actual ability to lead (‘moral’ in their own sense of the word of course). As well as Hitler’s increasing paranoia and mood swings, the incumbents have to contend with their own desire for either self-preservation or to wait for the inevitable overrunning of the enclave by the ‘barbarians at the gate’. And as another echo of the doomed Roman empire, this group continues to hold pointless meetings, to celebrate birthdays and marriages (Hitler & Eva Braun), and in Hitler’s case, planning for his succession! At the end, the suicide pact between Hitler & Braun, with the complicity of the other residents, is a pathetic act, designed to save AH’s body from being desecrated (as had Mussolini’s). To the end Hitler maintains a bizarre sense of achievement and his own worth, as he alternately vilifies his weak commanders (notably Goring & Himmler), the Luftwaffe’s failings, and the twin curses of communism and international Jewry.