Thursday, May 8, 2014

Book Review: Prisoner of Night and Fog by Anne Blankman

Release Date: April 22, 2014

Publisher: Balzer + Bray

Pages: 389

Received: Barnes and Noble

Star Rating: ★ ★ ★  

                    In 1930s Munich, danger lurks behind dark corners, and secrets are buried deep within the city. But Gretchen Müller, who grew up in the National Socialist Party under the wing of her "uncle" Dolf, has been shielded from that side of society ever since her father traded his life for Dolf's, and Gretchen is his favorite, his pet.

Uncle Dolf is none other than Adolf Hitler.

And Gretchen follows his every command.

Until she meets a fearless and handsome young Jewish reporter named Daniel Cohen. Gretchen should despise Daniel, yet she can't stop herself from listening to his story: that her father, the adored Nazi martyr, was actually murdered by an unknown comrade. She also can't help the fierce attraction brewing between them, despite everything she's been taught to believe about Jews.

As Gretchen investigates the very people she's always considered friends, she must decide where her loyalties lie. Will she choose the safety of her former life as a Nazi darling, or will she dare to dig up the truth—even if it could get her and Daniel killed?

My Thoughts:

In an instant, when I read the synopsis, I HAD to have this book in my hands. This time period interests me then and now. Anne Blankman tackles this book and the history, which seemed she put a lot of research into! The main character, Gretchen, is fictionally part of Hitler's inner circle. Which as you see in the description, she refers to Hitler as "Uncle Dolf". We see in Gretchen's eyes that, instead of the heartless and cruel image like in any other YA historical fictions, we see Hitler as a loving and pleasant man. This idea exceeded my expectations.

It's obvious that there must of been a lot of exploring to write this beautifully crafted novel. Research is very critical to writing historical fiction, and she blew me out of the waters. At the end of the book, an Author's Note was provided. It included real events and some more history. The author mentioned some real events that took place in that history period. I thought that idea was well thought out. Some characters in the story are real people! I was surprised when I saw these characters and very content with this concept! PRAISE.

The character making was so important and was well developed. When Gretchen discovered the truth about her father, the turning point of the story panned out. It's astonishing how learning the other side of the story, can change your outlook of the whole situation. The romance of David Cohen and Gretchen was pleasant and nothing more. I'm not opposed by them, I support it, but not crazily.

The reason it's not a full 5, is the pace of the plot building. I felt the plot in the beginning was very introductory to the characters then after the next half, it was impossible to put down. As for pace, I thought the plot seemed to follow lots of Gretchen's errors, but it was sometimes enjoyable. It was overall, a good steady pace that will grasp you into being invested in the characters, and the plot.

From the authentic characters, to the gripping plot, PRISONER OF NIGHT AND FOG was like being part of a history book. It poses as all of the makings of what will allow the reader to fall in love with YA Historical Fiction. This is marked as one of my favorite historical reads. I, truly, recommend this to history lovers and much more.

4.5/5 STARS

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad you enjoyed this! I've heard so many positive things about this book, and it sounds so unique that I think I have to get it on my next trip to the bookstore! Research is always so important for a historical fiction, and while I can't say I always notice when facts aren't straight, it definitely shows if an author has done little research as opposed to one who has done a lot to make sure that everything matches up - even if they have to bend some events to work in their story!


Images by Freepik