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- Joined: 08 Feb 2017 16:26
- Location: Dundee. UK.
- Posts: 15
- Joined: 20 Jan 2019 18:57
- Location: Devon, UK
The book is configured to have two time lines running in alternating chapters. One timeline takes us from Evas childhood, adolescence, work in Hoffman’s shop and then through the stages of her life with Hitler up to the closing months of the war. The second timeline covers the last days in the Bunker up to the rather strange ending of the book.
In reading this book you have to put aside the fact that some of the conversations and reported thoughts and actions Lundmark couldn’t possibly know but has included as a means by which to convey the story or give the reader a feel for occasion. Once you accept this is storytelling it makes the scene believable and by extension more interesting. Some of the observations are somewhat gratuitous; ‘Sweat trickled down the cleavage between Eva’s breasts’ being one of the more memorable ones!
Lundmark has repeated stories about Eva that have been covered in all the other books but has included many anecdotes that were new to me. These were woven together in a narrative that also drew on Eva’s home movies and other well documented photos of Hitler, the Berghof,the tea house and the Kehlsteinhaus. It’s fairly successful. I found some of ‘Eva’s’ thoughts about Gretl and Ilse a Little less convincing but then again Lundmark says he had access to many private documents not seen before so...who knows.
Where the book falls down is not necessarily Lundmark’s fault as it is in the proof reading. The book is littered with many basic spelling mistakes and incorrect use of words. There/their, grin/grim, Wenck(general)/Wench. Finally the book finishes. Literally just finishes! There is no summing up of Eva’s legacy (for want of a better word), no conclusions drawn. It just stops with a paragraph that could be, and probably was, included elsewhere in the book. Very strange.
All that said, I enjoyed it and felt better informed by the end of it. In fact if I hadn’t read anything else about her it was an all round good read. Certainly better than the book I mentioned at the beginning of this review.
There were no pictures in this abridged version and often the story covered parts of Hitlers life or events in the war that didn’t have much to do with Eva. All the same I’d give it 8/10.