“In this historical novel, two extended German families are torn apart by conflicting loyalties during the rise of Nazism. … Readers will find it chilling … Although the historical details of book burnings and Kristallnacht, portrayed here, are well known, the author’s strength is in his portrayal of ordinary Germans swept into the increasing horror – some actively, some passively – while others are stilled by fear. Well-developed characters bring new life to a familiar and frightening story.”

  • Kirkus Reviews 

“Engaging novel about a German family divided by the rise of the Reich … narrated in crisp, no-nonsense prose, the novel captures the dilemmas of ordinary people caught in the sweeping changes happening in Germany .. [and] the heart-rending tensions faced by the family.”

  • BookLife by Publishers Weekly 

“A historically rich, fictionalized family saga … a compelling and valuable story … The author has an impressive knowledge of history and knows how to convey it in digestible, flowing and easy-to-understand chunks … the characters sit within the perfect time frame.”

  • Colin Mustful, History Through Fiction

“So well written, it was a pleasure to read this and experience … the conflicted decisions this family and so many others made.”

  • Konrad Jarausch, Professor of History, University of North Carolina

“The prose sparkles, the descriptions so authentic I can picture myself in the locales.”

  • Lloyd C. Gardner, Professor Emeritus of History, Rutgers University

“A must read for anyone who wants an insider’s view of how war threatens a family’s cohesiveness. Interspersed with letters and historic photographs, as well as fascinating family memorabilia, this novel offers a portrait of everyday people facing the horrors of war and an era that must never be forgotten.”

  • Elaine Stock, author of The Resilient Women of World War II Trilogy

“I cannot praise this delightful family saga enough. Well written and enjoyable from start to finish. The Wessel family story takes the reader on a journey that goes from the first world war to the second, from the horrors of trench warfare, to the heel of the Nazi jackboots, and the impact both would have on normal German folk.”

  • Ian T. Gwilliams, author of U-Boat 931: Attack on America

“A fascinating and authentic story highlighting the terrible conflict facing a young man torn between his American and German roots. I highly recommend.’

  • Helen Parusel, author of A Mother’s War

“So well written … I particularly like the similarities between the Weimar period and the current preoccupations of American society.”

  • Kathleen Fagley, Professor Emerita of Literature, Keene State University