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The One from the Other
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Product Description

Germany, 1949: Amid the chaos of defeat, it's a place of dirty deals, rampant greed, fleeing Nazis, and all the intrigue and deceit readers have come to expect from this immensely talented thriller writer. In The One from the Other, Hitler's legacy lives on. For Bernie Gunther, Berlin has become too dangerous, and he now works as a private detective in Munich. Business is slow and his funds are dwindling when a woman hires him to investigate her husband's disappearance. No, she doesn't want him back-he's a war criminal. She merely wants confirmation that he is dead. It's a simple job, but in postwar Germany, nothing is simple-nothing is what it appears to be. Accepting the case,Bernie takes on far more than he'd bargained for, and before long, he is on the run, facing enemies from every side. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews:

  • A great read!
    Bernie Gunther's continuing adventures in the moral morass spawned by the rise of the Nazis and the cultural take over of Germany. Everyone is guilty and complicit and everybody is faced with moral choices that are neither black or white but layered "like the pewter colored clouds". A writing style of Hammett and a moral compass gone haywired Kerr leaves you questioning your most basic beliefs. ...more info
  • The German Gumshoe
    One From the Other is the long-awaited sequel to Philip Kerr's Berlin Noir, a trilogy about a private detective who must adapt to continue working in a new world order. Crimes, both ordinary and political, push Bernie Gunther places he would just as soon avoid. Beginning with the 1936 Olympics, through the horror of Kristallnacht, and ending with Soviet occupation this German gumshoe manages to survive on his wits, his charm, and his chameleon-like ability to adapt. By the end of the war this shamus has seen and done things he never would have imagined.

    One From the Other takes place in 1949. Germany is struggling to adjust to defeat and yet another world order. Their occupiers are trying to sort out the good Germans from the bad. Or is it the bad from the very bad? The Allies were all spying on one another in preparation for the long Cold War. And, the evil deeds of the Nazi regime hung over them all. Was anyone completely unimpeachable?

    As a mystery - thriller - detective story, this book has it all. But, there is something darker and more complex to Kerr's character. Much of his story takes place off the pages of the books during the in-between years. The books haul him back into the reader's view for insight into a moment in time. As this moment comes to a close we watch the war-weary private eye boarding a ship for Buenos Aires. You can almost see the gray film of post-war Europe beginning to lift and feel the vibrant warmth of Argentina in the distance. On the other hand, with a traveling companion like Albert Eichmann, it is doubtful.
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  • Flawed But Fabulous!
    I was so delighted to find another Bernie Gunther novel, I pre-ordered it! Kerr is definitely a thriller reader's dream-writer. In the latest installment, we find post-war Bernie Gunther, down and out, operating his late father-in-law's shabby hotel outside of Dachau (the once ambitious notorious concentration camp), drinking the few profits and contemplating how best to move on with life. But, like all Kerr's books involving Bernie, nothing is as it seems and soon Bernie is back at his true game as a fast-talking, irreverent, private detective running, hiding, and scheming to save his life.

    Yes, its true Bernie is older and not as spry, but once he's been set up, it won't take him long to ferret out what's up and how to get out of the hole he's in. Kerr's magic happens in character development and plot. Kerr's plot is sinuous and strikes like a viper, bending back on itself, leaving the reader in unfathomable waters that only Bernie can negotiate. Bernie, through his machinations in this thriller, shows the chaos that is post war Germany, without losing his sense of humor, even though there is much that is dark in this novel. Kerr has the ability to force us to look at our past mistakes while continuing to shock us with events, ideas, and characters we'd rather not think about. All of Kerr's characters are vital; many are detestable but all are believable. It's a joy to watch Kerr balance so many subplots and characters and just when you think he can't possibly connect the dots, the picture comes into focus and we see the final form take shape.

    Although you may have to suspend your belief system a few times at what seems too incredible to be true, Kerr manages to pick up all of the threads and wrap them up neatly by the end, leaving the reader wondering what will happen next. Please Philip don't make us wait another 15 years to find out what happens to Bernie. Though there were a few seemingly implausible aspects to the plot, this is still my favorite Bernie Gunther thriller. Bernie has lost none of his brashness, humor in the face of defeat, and ingenious ability to rise above his mistakes to outsmart the dirtiest of criminals. Highly recommended. Come back soon Bernie. ...more info
  • an excellent return to form
    Philip Kerr's Bernie Gunther books are all outstanding historical noir detective fiction, and this fourth entry in the series is no exception. Kerr draws vivid and memorable characters, does great work with shades of grey in personalities, and writes fluidly and with great humor. Gunther is not so much a detective as a ball in a pinball machine, bouncing from scene to scene and episode to episode, more generally at the whim and behest of his enemies than of his own volition. But he is never at a loss for a comment on anything.

    The plot is what it is; these things are never completely believable. I think one reads Kerr books for the use of the language, his absolutely meticulous research on people, places, businesses and not excluding streetmaps, and for demonstrating complete mastery of the noir writing craft. If Chandler would have written historically based fiction, this is what it would read like. Of all four Gunther books I would perhaps rate this one third (better than the Pale Criminal) but it's close, each one is most definitely worth your time if you are interested at all in this genre....more info
  • Not up to usual standards
    Carr's earlier Berlin stories were better. He seems less sure of himself here, less familiar with the background. The story is marred by cliches and stereotypes. Still better than most. ...more info
  • And mark how well the sequel hangs together
    William Shakespeare, King Richard III, Act III. Scene VI.
    And mark also how well "One From the Other", the sequel to Philip Kerr's Berlin Noir trilogy, hangs together. I picked up Kerr's latest Bernie Gunther novel soon after reading the first three novels. Despite what I consider a flawed plot, One From the Other was an entertaining read.

    The first three Gunther novels took place in Germany (usually Berlin) in 1936, 1938, and 1947. They pretty much tracked the rise and fall of the Third Reich. One From the Other takes us into 1949. Germany is still a defeated nation and a divided one as the Cold War continues to get colder. Gunther's wife is in the hospital after suffering a complete nervous breakdown and Bernie is managing his late father-in law's run down hotel. The hotel is located a stone's throw from Dachau's notorious concentration camp and it is no surprise to find that visitors are few and far between. A chance meeting with a U.S. Army officer at the hotel sets off a chain of events that plunges Bernie back into the detective business. Before long, Bernie is swimming through a deadly sea of ex-Nazis fleeing persecution and those secret organizations created to help them escape.

    The strong point of all four Bernie Gunther books has been Kerr's excellent portrayal of Bernie Gunther. From the outset Gunther has been the quintessential hardboiled detective (Kerr obviously has great affection for the genre) while at the same time coming across as a believable and all-too human character. One From the Other is no different. Here we find Gunther aging none too gracefully. He is not as spry or as tough as he used to be and he knows it. He is something of a defeated man in a defeated country.

    The weak point of "The One From the Other" is its plot. The plots of the first three Gunther struck me as all being well within the realm of possibility, even as Gunther worked his way (at cross purposes) with Nazi higher ups such as Himmler and Heydrich. The plot here just did not fall within those parameters for me. Others may disagree but the one plot device (which cannot be revealed in a review) that propels this story just struck me as being a bit beyond the pale. The plot was not so far fetched as to ruin the story but it did leave me shaking my head a bit.

    Despite my quibble over the plot device I found "The One From The Other" to be an enjoyable read. As noted, Kerr is a master at characterization and anyone who has read the earlier Gunther novels should be happy (as I was) to see how Gunther's life is going in post-war Germany.

    Four stars for the writing; three and one half stars for the plot. Recommended. L. Fleisig


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  • Reprinted from the Nov 2006 "The Historical Novels Review"
    Think Sam Spade as a German PI in postwar Europe, only here the streets are meaner than any in Dashiell Hammett's California, and Phillip Kerr's creation, Bernie Gunther, has more baggage than a Deutsche Bahn express train. Like many of the classic detective stories, this one starts with a stunning blonde in a red dress, arriving with a seemingly simple task. It leads Gunther into his most complex case, one with consequences that he may not escape. His investigation takes him into a world where good and bad seem synonymous, and one cannot tell the `one from the other.'

    Written in the style of Hammett and Raymond Chandler, this book can be both humorous and disturbing, often in the same paragraph. But the evil portrayed is anything but fictional, from an appearance by Adolph Eichmann to the complicity of the CIA in subverting justice for war criminals. Kerr's main character is complex as well, with a past tainted by Nazism and the brutality of war. Far more than just a mystery, this book sheds light on a postwar period largely forgotten, and brings to the fore the very real criminality of both victor and vanquished.

    For all its rather serious nature, it is a highly entertaining book, imaginatively conceived and smartly executed. Although it stands as a remarkable work of historical fiction, fans of hard-boiled detective stories will not be disappointed. This is the fourth in the Bernie Gunther series, written some fifteen years after his initial appearance. The only disappointment would be if we have to wait another decade and a half for another.
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  • Highly enjoyable
    Kerr expertly captures "the Ratline" in this action mystery by which Nazis were spirited out of Europe to South America. Frederick Forsyth started it in the "Odessa File" many years ago.

    Kerr's complex plotting is understandable, the scenes of Germany and Austria atmospheric, the fight and violence scenes very detailed in that grotesque way but it is that fictionalized sense of historical events blended into the plot line which make the book a fine enjoyable read.

    Kerr's repeated usage of similes, metaphors and wise guy remarks by his hero, Bernie Gunther should be scaled back as they distract and slow down the story line. One would expect that the age of hard boiled Philip Marlowe knock offs might end some day. ...more info
  • A Masterful Mystery
    I have always loved mysteries, and THE ONE FROM THE OTHER, simply put, was a sensational and stirring read. In this novel, Philip Kerr has rendered a seamless blending of fact and fiction, history and the wide-open realm of possibility, all packed up neatly in the form of a compelling page-turner. With his signature grace and panache, Kerr brings the post-World War II era, with all of the complexities of post-Nazi German life and conscience, into sharp relief; he also brings back Bernie Gunther, a crass and dirty detective, who somehow manages to maintain his own version of integrity--nobility, even--in the midst of the worst kind of ignobility. With precise attention to detail and flawless prose, with electrifying twists and turns, Kerr delivers a fast-paced and truly thrilling read....more info
  • Great read!
    I am in the middle of reading it now and I cannot put the book down except to praise it in this review. Great noir read! Get a copy and enjoy....more info
  • A real pageturner
    Philip Kerr's "The One from the Other" matches the character development and zig-zagging plots of his earlier novels. This post-WWII story is well-crafted and spell-binding at times. Bernie Gunther, the central character of the novel, is a classic version of the tough-hided and seen-it-all detective who quickly grabs the reader's sympathies and interest. I hope that Kerr has more in mind for Gunther in the future. This is a first-class read that I would like to see repeated....more info
  • "Detective work is a little like walking into a movie that is already started."
    Even if you haven't been exposed to Kerr's noir detective thrillers before, you soon will be enthralled by this fourth novel in the series. Bernie Gunther is a private detective working in Germany during and after WWII. In a story that spans the 1930's and 1940's, this latest installment of Gunther's adventures involves perpetration and prosecution of war crimes by the Third Reich.

    In post-WWII Germany Gunther confront his own culpability as a German in the crimes of the Nazis, as well as becoming embroiled in both the hunting of Nazi criminals and in these criminals attempts to flee prosecution. As is the convention in these novels, it all starts with a gorgeous femme fatale and ends with the exposition of a convoluted plot in which the hapless detective has been but a pawn.

    Like his literary ancestor Sam Spade, Bernie Gunther is a sarcastic, witty, hardboiled non-comformist who won't be bought and whose hilarious observations and descriptions of human nature keep the reader laughing even during the hero's darkest hour. Kerr's portrayal of this likeable character is lucid, mordant and finally melancholy. A suspenseful and thrilling plot rounds out the novel. Highly recommended....more info