on 2 September 2014
It's quite odd, but to my mind this novel falls into two parts, just as if the plot had been reset and started all over again yet displaying a completely different attitude.
In the first half Tom Cole, the hero, falls in love with a woman, loses track of her and rescues her. Like in today's average Hollywood blockbuster this happens quite smoothly. Troubles and problems are introduced, only to be solved in the simplest way, the villains are one-dimensionally villanous and subsequently dealt with. Since it is mostly written in dialogue imagining this novel as a movie came quite natural to me. Moreover I could even imagine which actor would be best fit to play which part, which made it a real funread.
The second part of the story, where Tom yet again is sent on a rescue mission, this time to save a friend, proved to me more satisfying. For here the villains are far less stereotype and the suffering becomes more real, all in all it's more diverse. All in all this contrasting element was so interesting that it made up for some flaws, like the sketchiness of the plot and the factual error of having a generation growing up between Hitler's rise in 1933 and the winter of 1944/45.