HHhH, Himmlers Hirn heißt Heydrich.

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panzerplatten
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HHhH, Himmlers Hirn heißt Heydrich.

Post by panzerplatten » 06 May 2012 11:07

(Himmlers brain is called Heydrich)
Novel by Laurent Boner, translated by Sam taylor.
Harvill secker £16.99/ebook £17.72.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/book ... /9229726/H
HhH-by-Laurent-Binet-review.html
Mark.

panzerplatten
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Re: HHhH, Himmlers Hirn heißt Heydrich.

Post by panzerplatten » 06 May 2012 11:10


PRZYB
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Re: HHhH, Himmlers Hirn heißt Heydrich.

Post by PRZYB » 02 Jun 2012 11:19

great book !

Nautilus
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Re: HHhH, Himmlers Hirn heißt Heydrich.

Post by Nautilus » 23 Dec 2018 19:41

Actually the book had something suspect.

Laurent Binet went to great length to make the characters in the Reich aappear ridiculous, cartoonish. Ernst Röhm was described as looking like a pig, having the nose of a pig and acting like a pig. (Which is not that far from truth, but out of place in a serious historic portrayal :) ) Himmler's thin and ugly appearance was exaggerated. Heydrich was described as incompetent in intelligence matters, although his actions in real-life 1938-1942 timeframe are not quite so.

At the same time, the author criticized sharply Jonathan Littell's "The Kindly Ones"... for being historically unsupported fantasy. As the old proverb of the pot and the kettle says.

So there's something inside, something which is not just a friendly rivalry of historical novelists.

HHhH is less fiction and more of a ...parody. A specific French form of parody. It takes the usual tropes of historic fiction inspired by the fascination for the Reich (in this case, Heydrich's ability as a spymaster; others, just as common, are: superweapons, extraordinary generalship, bravery of the SS...) and slices them into small pieces to deconstruct them.

It shows the key characters in a grossly, exaggeratedly ridiculous way... just as a reply for the 2000s fiction which shows them into a grossly, exaggeratedly heroic-villainous way.

cutters
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Re: HHhH, Himmlers Hirn heißt Heydrich.

Post by cutters » 18 Feb 2019 09:35

To be honest I enjoyed the book. What makes the book so good is that he presents the main characters as people of flesh and blood and you get to know them unlike how they would be portrayed in normal history books.
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Nautilus
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Re: HHhH, Himmlers Hirn heißt Heydrich.

Post by Nautilus » 07 Apr 2019 21:08

cutters: see above.

Modern people have little reason to be attracted to the Interbellum timeframe. Too much poverty, street violence, banditry, political repression, assassinations, dirt, pollution.

Guess what? People who reached adulthood in the Interbellum had just as little reason to like it :D

The generation of our grandparents knew it too much.

What we are drawn to in the Interbellum and WWII is a perceived sense of freedom, adventure, coolness and heroism. To test your limits on the battlefield, on the high seas, in undeclared urban combat in the streets of Berlin. Ending your day with a glass of Schnapps and a high-class girl at Miss Kitty's. Damn, It Feels Good To Be Gangsta.

So popular writers inflate the coolness, adventure and heroism of those involved, as in the traditional tropes of adventure novels. A "Nazi leader" became some sort of Marvel Comics supervillain.

In the same vein, Laurent Binet parodied them in the French tradition - a "Nazi leader" turned in some kind of funny, Sonny Corleone-like bastard. Brought them down to Earth in a crash-land.

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