Skeletons at the Feast

Skeletons at the Feast

A Novel

Book - 2008
Average Rating:
11
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In January 1945, in the waning months of World War II, a small group of people begin the longest journey of their lives: an attempt to cross the remnants of the Third Reich, from Warsaw to the Rhine if necessary, to reach the British and American lines.

Among the group is eighteen-year-old Anna Emmerich, the daughter of Prussian aristocrats. There is her lover, Callum Finella, a twenty-year-old Scottish prisoner of war who was brought from the stalag to her family's farm as forced labor. And there is a twenty-six-year-old Wehrmacht corporal, who the pair know as Manfred--who is, in reality, Uri Singer, a Jew from Germany who managed to escape a train bound for Auschwitz.

As they work their way west, they encounter a countryside ravaged by war. Their flight will test both Anna's and Callum's love, as well as their friendship with Manfred--assuming any of them even survive.

Perhaps not since The English Patient has a novel so deftly captured both the power and poignancy of romance and the terror and tragedy of war. Skillfully portraying the flesh and blood of history, Chris Bohjalian has crafted a rich tapestry that puts a face on one of the twentieth century's greatest tragedies--while creating, perhaps, a masterpiece that will haunt readers for generations.
Publisher: New York, NY : Shaye Areheart : 2008
ISBN: 9780307394958
Branch Call Number: FIC Bohj
Characteristics: 372p

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AL_WENDY Nov 15, 2016

A powerful book! It's dark and often brutal, yet tempered by love and hope. Beautifully written and impeccably researched. If you are not afraid of an honest look at a bleak time in history, this book is for you.

m
mcdoff
Oct 17, 2016

Arlene say "a must".

BostonPL_LauraB Mar 29, 2016

This story was just an "ok" story set during a WWII time-frame. Maybe I've read too many of these types of accounts, but this isn't one that necessarily stood out. I did enjoy the mix of characters (a German family, a Scottish POW, and an escaped Jew posing as a German soldier) and how they interact with each other and learn to help each other, but overall there just wasn't a lot of meat to the story. I'm still going to read more of his books, because the writing is vivid and smart, I just think that this setting is a tired and over-done setting and in order for it to be a "great" novel, there needs to be something else to make it stand out.

w
wmtlady
Apr 27, 2014

The background for this historical novel is great, but it plods along so slowly that I had to quit after the first couple of chapters.

b
becker
Apr 08, 2014

The story of an assorted group of people in Germany who are fleeing the advance of the Russian army as WWII is coming to an end. This is a very character driven story with many heartbreaking moments. This audio production is done by the excellent narrator Mark Bramhall.

librarylady70 Dec 18, 2013

This is a fascinating book because it's a World War II story told from the German civilian point of view. Word to the squeamish, though - it contains many horrific descriptions of violence, genocide and other war crimes. Unlike watching a movie, you can't close your eyes. If you don't like graphic violence, this book may not be for you. I don't like it, but the book was so good I pushed through.

i
IV27HUjg
Oct 05, 2013

I've liked all his books, especially this one.

beckymatyas Aug 28, 2013

This book really puts you into the time of WII, with the hardship, starvation and mistreatment that everyone experienced near the end of the war. Most interesting was that love can survive in horrible circumstances and gullible people can finally see the great harm being done by their leaders.

StratfordLibrary Mar 22, 2013

Blind Date With A Book comment: excellent fictional book on the ending days of WWII; didn't want to put it down."

k
kgillett
Feb 27, 2013

Excellent historical fiction set during the days of WW II, featuring a family who is fleeing the Soviets and a German jewish.

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