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The Iron Curtain Kid Paperback – 26 Nov 2012
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I think Oliver shares his anecdotes and life experiences in a brilliant style (I disagree with some of the other reviewers who criticized the narrative... it's not meant to be a PhD thesis, it's meant to be an easy and entertaining read). I found the book fascinating and very educative. It's extremely interesting to understand how life was behind the Iron Curtain. I found the book to be tremendously interesting... it's crazy to think that only 20 years ago, life in East Germany was so different to what it is now. In that sense, Oliver's book is a true History lesson, giving all of us who grew up in the "West" a great insight into what life was like in the "East". In many instance it was not like the "West" had portrayed it to us...
I also thought the book was very comprehensive, and covered a whole bunch of aspects of the day to day life: school, home, family, car, shopping, work, travels, jokes, etc.
I only wish the book had been longer as I could have kept on reading Oliver's anecdotes and tales!
Thanks very much for sharing this portion of your lifes with us, the readers. I found your book extremely insightful!
I have already recommended this real page turner to friends and family and will continue to do so as I believe it should be recognised for what it is, a great book.
I have read extensively about the DDR and Berlin (I live in Berlin 4mths of each year), however, this book has been a revelation in that it provides a balance between so many works influenced and seeming to maintain Western propaganda about the plight and desperate conditions of the people living in East Germany and a 'reality' observed by an articulate ex-resident.
Oliver Fritz chooses a style of writing, which makes it easy to read as a continuous narrative or dip-in to one of the titled elements, which have an essay type quality.
His use of data as a means of comparison is both novel and revealing; take away the Stasi element and there is something very appealing about the security provided by a system that placed the ordinary people first. The whole work floats on a layer of topical jokes, which not only make you smile but based on the premise 'that many a true word spoken in jest' confirms both Fritz's data and observation.
It will not prepare you for a visit to Berlin, however, if you do go to the city and visit the eastern areas 'as was' and want to gain an insight into another time made mythical via East and West propaganda then this book is a 'must read'
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