John Lawton Then We Take Berlin

ISBN 13: 9780802121967

Then We Take Berlin

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9780802121967: Then We Take Berlin
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Joe Wilderness is a World War II orphan, a condition that he thinks excuses him from common morality. Cat burglar, card sharp, and Cockney wide boy, the last thing he wants is to get drafted. But in 1946 he finds himself in the Royal Air Force, facing a stretch in military prison . . . when along comes Lt Colonel Burne-Jones to tell him MI6 has better use for his talents.

Posted to occupied Berlin, interrogating ex-Nazis, and burgling the odd apartment for MI6, Wilderness finds himself with time on his hands and the devil making work. He falls in with Frank, a US Army captain, with Eddie, a British artilleryman and with Yuri, a major in the NKVD and together they lift the black market scam to a new level. Coffee never tasted so sweet. And he falls for Nell Breakheart, a German girl who has witnessed the worst that Germany could do and is driven by all the scruples that Wilderness lacks.

Fifteen years later, June 1963. Wilderness is free-lance and down on his luck. A gumshoe scraping by on divorce cases. Frank is a big shot on Madison Avenue, cooking up one last Berlin scam . . . for which he needs Wilderness once more. Only now they're not smuggling coffee, they're smuggling people. And Nell? Nell is on the staff of West Berlin's mayor Willy Brandt, planning for the state visit of the most powerful man in the world: "Ich bin ein Berliner!"

Then We Take Berlin is a gripping, meticulously researched and richly detailed historical thriller – a moving story of espionage and war, and people caught up in the most tumultuous events of the twenty-first century.

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About the Author:

John Lawton is the author of ten novels, including Second Violin, Flesh Wounds, and Bluffing Mr. Churchill. His thriller Black Out won a WH Smith Fresh Talent Award, A Little White Death was named a New York Times notable book, and his latest novel A Lily of the Field was named one of the best thrillers of the year by Marilyn Stasio of The New York Times. At the moment he lives in Derbyshire, England, but can often be found (or lost) elsewhere.

Review:

A Publishers Weekly Big Book” of Fall 2013

John Lawton’s stylish spy thriller, Then We Take Berlin, is a splendid introduction to John Wilfrid (Wilderness) Holderness, born a Cockney guttersnipe, trained in various criminal enterprises by his grandfather and transformed into a British intelligence operative during World War II. . . .[An] enthralling story of Wilderness’s adventures in espionage and Lawton’s harrowing descriptions of life in the battered nations of Europe in 1945, when the war was over but never seemed to end.” New York Times Book Review

Lawton’s gift for atmosphere, memorable characters and intelligent plotting has been compared to John le Carré, but his dry humor also invokes the late Ross Thomas. . . . Never mind the comparisons Lawton can stand up on his own, and Then We Take Berlin is a gem.” The Seattle Times

A dangerous assignment in East Berlin is fraught with complex memories from postwar Europe. . . . A wonderfully complex and nuanced thriller.” Kirkus Reviews

"Lawton captures both the immediate postwar and midcentury landscapes perfectly, stirring elements of Graham Greene, John le Carré, and the great Ross Thomas' too-little-known McCorkle and Padillo novels into a superbly well-built Cold War cocktail bracing, deliriously delicious, but carrying the slightly bitter aftertaste of dreams gone bad." Booklist (starred review)

This intelligent first in a new series from Lawton (A Lily of the Field and six other Inspector Troy thrillers) opens on the eve of President Kennedy’s 1963 Berlin visit, but the real meat lies in the compelling backstory of John Wilford Holderness, an East London Cockney who joins the RAF in 1946. . . . A wonderfully written and generally wise book that will thrill readers with an interest in WWII and the early Cold War era.” Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Absolute dynamite in a trench coat . . . Don’t miss this one!” I Love A Mystery Newsletter

A thriller that is sure to have any fan of John Le Carré’s Smiley novels gripped.” Crime Fiction Lover

[Then We Take Berlin] is a stand-alone novel outside [Lawton’s] wonderful Troy’ series, set in Berlin in 1963 . . . it is extremely good.” Deadly Pleasures

A very captivating read.” Fantasy Book Critic

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780802122766: Then We Take Berlin: A Joel Wilderness Novel (The Joe Wilderness Novels)

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ISBN 10:  0802122760 ISBN 13:  9780802122766
Publisher: Grove Press, 2014
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9781611855654: Then We Take Berlin (Joe Wilderness Series)

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9781611856125: Then We Take Berlin (Joe Wilderness Series)

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9781410465092: Then We Take Berlin (Thorndike Press Large Print Thriller)

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