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Ordinary Heroes Paperback – Unabridged, 24 Aug 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Pan; Unabridged edition (24 Aug. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330441337
  • ISBN-13: 978-0739469682
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.4 x 19.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 651,891 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

Praise for Scott Turow: "No one writes better mystery suspense novels than Scott Turow." -"Los Angeles Times "Scott Turow not only knows what his readers want, he delivers just about perfectly . . . Turow is the closest we have to a Balzac of the fin de siecle professional class." -Todd Gitlin, "Chicago Tribune "[Turow has] set new standards for the genre, most notably in the depth and subtlety of his characterizations . . . the kind of reading pleasure that only the best novelists-genre or otherwise-can provide."-Gary Krist, "The New York Times "Of all the lawyer-storytellers who have clambered onto the bestseller lists in recent years, Scott Turow is the champ. Not only are his plots absorbing and his characters persuasive, but his sentences flow with an artful cadence."-Dennis Drabelle, "The Washington Post Book World

Book Description

Whilst mourning the death of his father, journalist Stewart Dubin decides to research the life of a man he had always respected, always admired, but possibly never quite knew . . . As a young, idealistic lawyer during the last terrible months of the Second World War, David Dubin was sent to the European Front – ostensibly to bring charges against a brave American hero, Robert Martin, who had suddenly, inexplicably, gone local and stopped following orders. Martin has become a liability and the authorities want him neutralized. But as Dubin learns more about Martin and the demons possessing him, he finds himself falling in love with Martin's enigmatic ex-mistress – a dangerous woman of incredible courage. And someone who will do anything to protect her comrade-in-arms . . . Stewart discovers a journal written by his father – and learns of his incredible courage in the face of battle, reads first-hand of the shattering moral consequences for those caught in the chaos of war and, finally, the secret he had died protecting . . . --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Mr. S. J. Bonsor VINE VOICE on 6 April 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've lost count of the number of critically acclaimed so-called 'page-turners'which have left me cold. You've probably read a few despite yourself: The kind of thriller which has sketchily-drawn photofit characters, a tortuous plotline and a kind of moralistic sheen sprayed over it to justify the meagre story. 'Ordinary Heroes', however, is not that kind of book.
I was aware of Scott Turow's abilities as a storyteller, but in his latest novel he has raised his game to produce an extraordinary book- the kind of satisfying read which makes you feel you have truly engaged with the characters, rather than having been a mere spectator. In short this is that rare breed: a genuinely literary novel which still manages to retain the best attributes of more populist fiction. The story poses some of the more intractable questions about what motivates the individual- love, duty, self-interest- and in the context of a family history, arrives at surprising, if ultimately satisfying, answers.
Stewart Dubinsky, a journalist, researches the life of his recently deceased father, David Dubin. He discovers that David was attached to the Judge Advocate General's Department of the US Military during World war II, dealing with Court Martials in the newly freed France and Germany. Against the background of the Battle of the Bulge and the onward push of Allied forces into Germany, David Dubin is sent on a 'Heart of Darkness'style mission to track down a renegade US Officer, Major Robert Martin. Although ostensibly working for the OSS, Martin's motives and loyalties are called into question. He and his nemesis, General Teedle (Dubin's commanding officer, and the source of the mission)crop up again and again in a game of cat and mouse throughout the novel.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Ichabod J VINE VOICE on 10 Oct. 2006
Format: Paperback
Turow has written another legal thriller here, but one with a difference, as the novel takes the form of a tale within a tale and has mainly a wartime setting.

Following the death of his father, Stewart Dubinsky discovers the parent he knew as a staid, respectable lawyer had faced a court-martial in the Second World War. His father's manuscript account of the events leading to this forms the bulk of the novel.

The book contains some powerful writing about the experience of war and its impact on ordinary men. Certainly it is a cut above the usual derring-do of many war adventures. There is also a sort of love story, but one in which the development of romance is shaped by the war in which it blooms.

Turow has fashioned a thoughtful novel about the search for identity and the quest for truth. The father, David Dubin, struggles to understand his own self, and the true intentions of others during the maelstrom of battle. This is followed by the son's quest to understand his father more fully. Along the way, Stewart Dubinsky (whose surname has reverted to its original form) discovers more than he expected about his family and true heritage.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By SJ SMART on 16 Dec. 2006
Format: Paperback
I have been let down by so many books about or set in World War Two BUT this is NOT one of them. Its a very powerful portrayal of Americans at war seen through the eyes of a lawyer pursuing an OSS agent and ending up in combat during the Battle of the Bulge.

Its very well written and very detailed and despite what you might think after reading the above very believable and realistic. It reminded me a bit of the great book and TV series Band of Brothers. If you liked that you will like this.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Steve Chapman on 1 Sept. 2006
Format: Paperback
Although you could see the punchline a long way before the main character does, I felt this took Turow a long way back towards the brilliant 'early' novels he produced. Highly enjoyable, a real pageturner for many different reasons, can see the screenplay being written as we speak. A 'Saving Private Ryan' with emotion.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Scholastica on 7 Sept. 2012
Format: Paperback
When Stewart Dubinsky finds out that his recently deceased father had been subjected to a court martial at the conclusion of WW2, he cannot believe what he is hearing. This is a history that has never been spoken about. His mother, when asked, refuses to be drawn and doesn't want the history to be explored.

Stewart, however, finds that he needs to know the details of the crime that his father committed. His father's solicitor, Bear Leach, is still alive and still has some papers from the time in his possession - Stewart embarks on a journey of discovery, which takes the reader into the action at the front in France in 1944/45.

Reading the acknowledgements at the back, it is interesting to learn that many of the smaller details (for instance, a vivid description of a parachute drop) were the stories of Turow's own father. But that is as far as the autobiographical influence goes.

Others have praised this novel highly. I feel less enthusiastic, to me it is a slightly above average novel of the second world war, but not a brilliant one. It's very readable and there are a couple of fantastic characterisations - Major Teedle, for instance, a gruff man in the field, yet much given to theological philosophy. However, I never really felt that the narrator, Stewart, 'belonged' to the story and this. for me, dragged the novel down.

If I was looking for a place on my bookshelf for this book, I would put it alongside A Whispered Name: 3 (The Father Anselm Novels) by William Brodrick and Restless by William Boyd. Both have similar WW2 backdrops and have the mystery/thriller slant that this book has and to which this book compares very favourably.
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