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Berlin Noir Paperback – Jul 1 1993


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 848 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin UK (July 1 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140231706
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140231700
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.7 x 3.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 558 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #103,569 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents


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Most helpful customer reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dave and Joe TOP 100 REVIEWER on Jan. 2 2007
Format: Paperback
I stumbled on this book and was immediately captivated. The mysterys are more than servicable but what makes the book is the glimpse into a Germany that is seldom seen. The life of day to day Germans during and after the Nazi era. For the first time you see what it was like living under occupation of your own government. Amazing characterizations. This is how they should teach history!! Loved it ... learned a lot ... no higher praise.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on Oct. 6 1997
Format: Paperback
I was loaned this trilogy as a vacation read, I started reading in Dubai airport and barely raised my head until I had finished. The first three days of my vacation were wasted in terms of enjoying Spanish culture, but I don't regret it.
The three novels span WW2 from the nasty beginning of anti-semitism, through the hostilities to the final sad ruin of reconstruction Germany. Kerr's wonderfully cynical private eye understands the compromises necessary to survive in all of these Germanys but remains human throughout the horrors. These are highly intelligent detective stories beautifully written with sympathy for ordinary Germans doing what they could to get by, but the insight into wartime Germany is the real treat. Philip Kerr is a great writer and I consider this to be him at his very best.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. A. Northrop on June 14 2004
Format: Paperback
I devoured this trilogy in just under 10 days, I thought it was fantastic. I really enjoyed how Kerr managed to naturally weave in the historical facts with his fictional characters. I particularly liked the first section "March Violets" the best, it was a real page-turner which I found hard to set down once I started. The second, "The Pale Criminal" was good, but had several parts which dragged a bit and the third "A German Requiem" picked it up a bit with a refreshing change of scenery and a fast-paced plot line. Kerr's writing is phenomenal and witty and the superb and complete way the characters are developed is very unique. The reason I did not give it 5 stars is that in certain places (especially when romantic situations and physical relationships are described) the dialogue and occurences aren't believable and can be laughable in parts....seems out of place with Kerr's otherwise sparkling writing. Also, at the ends of the individual books, there are a few loose ends - I was on the edge of my seat waiting for them to be clarified, but to no avail....sometimes this quality is a plus, attesting to skill of the writer to pull you in, but I felt abandoned by the text, as if I'd been loyal to the construction but was tricked out of the satisfaction of seeing the final product. However, overall I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it extremely favorably, especially to those who have a special interest in this time period of WWII and Nazi Germany. Even if you don't, you won't regret putting in the time to get to know these characters as well as Kerr's writing style. Enjoy!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
_Berlin Noir_'s three books look at Bernie Gunther's detective work in Berlin pre-and-post WWII. The stories are hard-boiled (although not quite as hard-boiled as Chandler's) fairly literary (but, to me, not pretentious) descriptions of private eyeing with twisting plots, delightful analogies, and fascinating characters.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Richard L. Pangburn on Feb. 27 2004
Format: Paperback
Chandler's opening style is widely imitated. Here's a conscious tribute which goes Chandler one better by putting this voice into Hitler's Germany. Here he parodies the opening of THE BIG SLEEP, and does it deliciously. Only Barry Fantoni does Chandler as well.
"Circling the courtyard was an ambulatory, with a roof supported by thick beams and wooden columns, and this was patrolled by man with a pair of evil-looking Dobermanns. There wasn't much light apart from the coachlamp by the fron door, but as far as I could see the house was white with pebbledash walls and a deep mansard roof--as big as a decent-sized hotel of the sort I couldn't afford. Somewhere in the trees behind the house a peacock was screaming for help."
This paragraph is also brilliantly constructed, but what especially appeals to me is the self-effacing joke about the size of the house and the last sentence, the sort of telling detail that mirrors the sardonic attitude of the narrator toward the Nazi rich.
Next paragraph:
"Closer to the door I got my first good look at the doctor. Since he was at least fifty, I suppose you could say he was distinguished looking. Taller than he had seemed sitting in the back of the car, and dressed fastidiously, but with a total disregard for fashion. He wore a stiff color you could have sliced bread with, a pin-striped suit of a light-grey shade, a cream-colored waist-coat and spats; his hands were gloved in grey kid, and on his neatly cropped square grey head he wore a large grey hat with a brim that surrounded the high pleated crown like a castle moat. He looked like an old suit of armor."
A typical Chandleresque paragraph with the short summation sentence at the end like a punchline.
Read more ›
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By J. G. Bruyea on Dec 31 2010
Format: Paperback
I love all of Philip Kerr novels , this is special , 3 books in one , Bernie Gunther is smart , fun and living in a very difficult time , this series is both entertaining and educational , all the Bernie Gunther series are highly recommended , wonderful read. Hope there will be more soon.
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