In 1945, when Baruch Posner learns of his mother’s impending trial for assisting the Gestapo as a Greiferin, a “Catcher” who identifies Jews hiding as non-Jews, referred to as “U-Boats,” he returns to Berlin. Sitting unnoticed in the rear of the courtroom, he discovers his mother’s infamy and reflects on his escape from Germany to Cuba and then to the U.S. Leaving the courtroom, he swears never to return to Germany, his mother be damned. But a year later, he receives a letter from Gemma Rosselli, a former friend, coworker, and ally in the underground, as well as romantic interest. She writes that she has found in the Nazi archives information bearing on his parents. To see the documents, he must appear in person.
An absorbing new insight into a little-known aspect of the second world war. Paul Levitt takes us deep into pre and post-war Berlin in a fast-moving, brilliantly observed, enthralling and engaging story of a Jewish son forced to confront his mother’s way of surviving as Nazi power increased. We are caught up in his growing fears and nightmares. “I was returning to this address to look for yesterday, and that I had to come to a place where I could hear the voices of the dead.” The writing is taut and direct drawing you into this powerful and poignant voyage of discovery. Most importantly, its impact stays with you.
— Martin Jenkins, former Chief Producer (Drama, British Broadcasting Corporation, UK)
A startlingly fresh & absorbing approach to the Holocaust. It is a fictional memoir, a love, story, a man’s search through time for himself & the answers to crucial questions about himself, his parents, the Nazi world he grew up in, & his return to Berlin for new information and a reassessment. The novel is a bold & original approach to a painful & important subject.
—Fred Kaplan, Distinguished Professor Emeritus City University of New York
The incomparable Paul Levitt takes us on another whirlwind adventure of the mind and memory along the littoral where history and the literary imagination overlap. Berlin Revisited seamlessly weaves together horrific, unnerving events and believable people from the era of Hitler, Stalin, and the Holocaust through original and beautiful writing that gives the novel a mesmerizing pull.
—Alan Wald, H. Chandler Davis Collegiate Professor Emeritus University of Michigan
It is said that “Character is the life-blood of fiction.” If you give a character/characters a problem, you have a plot. Paul M. Levitt is the quintessential novelist, one who masterly controls his storyline, the development of his characters, their emotions and actions, imbuing them with natural-sounding dialogue, and setting up the essence of all novels: conflict between and interest in characters. In his historical novel Berlin Revisited, he has produced a thoroughly engaging and a highly recommended book, one that lingers in one’s mind long after it is finished.
—Peter Thabit Jones, Welsh poet and dramatist Author (with Aeronwy Thomas) of Dylan Thomas Walking Tour of Greenwich Village