Jonathan Littell The Kindly Ones

ISBN 13: 9780061353451

The Kindly Ones

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9780061353451: The Kindly Ones
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Named one of the "100 Best Books of the Decade" by The Times of London "Oh my human brothers, let me tell you how it happened." A former Nazi officer, Dr. Maximilien Aue has reinvented himself, many years after the war, as a middle-class family man and factory owner in France. An intellectual steeped in philosophy, literature, and classical music, he is also a cold-blooded assassin and the consummate bureaucrat. Through the eyes of this cultivated yet monstrous man we experience in disturbingly precise detail the horrors of the Second World War and the Nazi genocide of the Jews. Eichmann, Himmler, GÖring, Speer, Heydrich, HÖss—even Hitler himself—play a role in Max's story. An intense and hallucinatory historical epic, The Kindly Ones is also a morally challenging read. It holds a mirror up to humanity—and the reader cannot look away.

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From the Back Cover:

"Oh my human brothers, let me tell you how it happened." So begins the chilling fictional memoir of Dr. Maximilien Aue, a former Nazi officer who has reinvented himself, many years after the war, as a middle-class family man and factory owner in France.

Max is an intellectual steeped in philosophy, literature, and classical music. He is also a cold-blooded assassin and the consummate bureaucrat. Through the eyes of this cultivated yet monstrous man, we experience in disturbingly precise detail the horrors of the Second World War and the Nazi genocide of the Jews. During the period from June 1941 through April 1945, Max is posted to Poland, the Ukraine, and the Caucasus; he is present at the Battle of Stalingrad and at Auschwitz; and he lives through the chaos of the final days of the Nazi regime in Berlin. Although Max is a totally imagined character, his world is peopled by real historical figures, such as Eichmann, Himmler, Göring, Speer, Heyrich, Höss, and Hitler himself.

A supreme historical epic and a haunting work of fiction, Jonathan Littell's masterpiece is intense, hallucinatory, and utterly original. Published to impressive critical acclaim in France in 2006, it went on to win the Prix Goncourt, that country's most prestigious literary award, and sparked a broad range of responses and questions from readers: How does fiction deal with the nature of human evil? How should a novel encompass the Holocaust? At what point do history and fiction come together and where do they separate?

A provocative and controversial work of literature, The Kindly Ones is a morally challenging read; it holds up a mirror to humanity—and the reader cannot look away.

About the Author:

Jonathan Littell was born in New York to American parents, and grew up in the United States and France. He lives in Barcelona, Spain.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780061353468: The Kindly Ones: A Novel

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  0061353469 ISBN 13:  9780061353468
Publisher: Harper Perennial, 2010
Softcover

9780099513148: Kindly Ones

Vintag..., 2010
Softcover

9780701181659: The Kindly Ones

Chatto..., 2009
Hardcover

9780061724473: The Kindly Ones

Harper, 2009
Softcover

9780771051531: The Kindly Ones

McClel..., 2009
Hardcover

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