on March 22, 2000
Remarque, best known for "All Quiet On the Western Front", tells the story of Ross (or Roger), a refugee from Germany who arrives in the United States to find a new life. Written in the first person, the story is primarily set in New York City during the final year of World War II.
Roger and his friends are plagued by memories of the atrocities that occurred. They recount stories of concentration camps, tortures and close calls. The refugees must also deal with friends and family who they had to leave behind. They also struggle to find work and must deal with the rapid changes their lives have undergone. The story also has a love affair between a refugee model Natasha and Roger. Remarque fans will find that Ravic, from "Arch of Triumph", is in the book, although his part is minor and is never officially acknowledged as belonging to the previous book (although the similarities exist).
I wasn't that happy with the book. Aside from the refugee's attempts at becoming Americans and their memories, there was very little tension in the book. Natasha's and Roger's love affair was dubious at best and they seemed to be an odd combination. However, Remarque's brilliant and insightful dialogue saved the book.