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Children of Nazis: The Sons and Daughters of Himmler, Göring, Höss, Mengele, and Others— Living with a Father’s Monstrous Legacy

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In 1940, the German sons and daughters of great Nazi dignitaries Himmler, Göring, Hess, Frank, Bormann, Speer, and Mengele were children of privilege at four, five, or ten years old, surrounded by affectionate, all-powerful parents. Although innocent and unaware of what was happening at the time, they eventually discovered the extent of their father’s occupations: These me In 1940, the German sons and daughters of great Nazi dignitaries Himmler, Göring, Hess, Frank, Bormann, Speer, and Mengele were children of privilege at four, five, or ten years old, surrounded by affectionate, all-powerful parents. Although innocent and unaware of what was happening at the time, they eventually discovered the extent of their father’s occupations: These men—their fathers who were capable of loving their children and receiving love in return—were leaders of the Third Reich, and would later be convicted as monstrous war criminals. For these children, the German defeat was an earth-shattering source of family rupture, the end of opulence, and the jarring discovery of Hitler’s atrocities. How did the offspring of these leaders deal with the aftermath of the war and the skeletons that would haunt them forever? Some chose to disown their past. Others did not. Some condemned their fathers; others worshipped them unconditionally to the end. In this enlightening book, Tania Crasnianski examines the responsibility of eight descendants of Nazi notables, caught somewhere between stigmatization, worship, and amnesia. By tracing the unique experiences of these children, she probes at the relationship between them and their fathers and examines the idea of how responsibility for the fault is continually borne by the descendants.


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In 1940, the German sons and daughters of great Nazi dignitaries Himmler, Göring, Hess, Frank, Bormann, Speer, and Mengele were children of privilege at four, five, or ten years old, surrounded by affectionate, all-powerful parents. Although innocent and unaware of what was happening at the time, they eventually discovered the extent of their father’s occupations: These me In 1940, the German sons and daughters of great Nazi dignitaries Himmler, Göring, Hess, Frank, Bormann, Speer, and Mengele were children of privilege at four, five, or ten years old, surrounded by affectionate, all-powerful parents. Although innocent and unaware of what was happening at the time, they eventually discovered the extent of their father’s occupations: These men—their fathers who were capable of loving their children and receiving love in return—were leaders of the Third Reich, and would later be convicted as monstrous war criminals. For these children, the German defeat was an earth-shattering source of family rupture, the end of opulence, and the jarring discovery of Hitler’s atrocities. How did the offspring of these leaders deal with the aftermath of the war and the skeletons that would haunt them forever? Some chose to disown their past. Others did not. Some condemned their fathers; others worshipped them unconditionally to the end. In this enlightening book, Tania Crasnianski examines the responsibility of eight descendants of Nazi notables, caught somewhere between stigmatization, worship, and amnesia. By tracing the unique experiences of these children, she probes at the relationship between them and their fathers and examines the idea of how responsibility for the fault is continually borne by the descendants.

30 review for Children of Nazis: The Sons and Daughters of Himmler, Göring, Höss, Mengele, and Others— Living with a Father’s Monstrous Legacy

  1. 5 out of 5

    Lynn

    Most of the men who ruled the Third Reich were only in their forties, so the children about whom this book is written were very young during the war. Most of them were either protected from the knowledge of what their fathers were doing, or lived in Nazi enclaves so completely cut off from the rest of the world that those around them had no reason to discuss it. Often they only began to understand when their fathers (and sometimes their mothers) were arrested, by which time the 'normative moral Most of the men who ruled the Third Reich were only in their forties, so the children about whom this book is written were very young during the war. Most of them were either protected from the knowledge of what their fathers were doing, or lived in Nazi enclaves so completely cut off from the rest of the world that those around them had no reason to discuss it. Often they only began to understand when their fathers (and sometimes their mothers) were arrested, by which time the 'normative moral framework' in which their parents' actions would be judged had already changed. Still, their individual responses varied widely, from absolute refusal to accept their fathers' culpability to being sterilized for fear of passing on 'evil' genes. The response depended on a number of factors: personality, yes, but also their own memories of their fathers, the attitudes of their mothers and siblings, their experiences in the immediate aftermath of the war, and what they ultimately chose to do with their own lives. Like pretty much everything else to do with history, it's a story about how people cope, and that story is invariably interesting. The author met only one of her subjects; most of those who weren't already dead by the time she wrote were either far too old to be involved or had long since decided they were done talking about it. Thus most of the information presented was carefully pieced together from the subjects' writings, earlier interviews, observations by third parties, and whatever other sources she could find. As a result, it reads as though it were patched together. Nonetheless, I think the topic is one that needed patching together.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Gina Marie ~books are my drug of choice~

    I went into reading his book with some trepidation. I was a bit scared of what was going to be the various children' stories, as well as a fear the children would either be whitewashed or painted black. I was joyfully impressed by how evenhanded and well researched the book was. She didn't back off the story of those who worship their father until the day they died or those who hated everything their father did. The fathers and in some cases mothers were researched. Much of each section is dedic I went into reading his book with some trepidation. I was a bit scared of what was going to be the various children' stories, as well as a fear the children would either be whitewashed or painted black. I was joyfully impressed by how evenhanded and well researched the book was. She didn't back off the story of those who worship their father until the day they died or those who hated everything their father did. The fathers and in some cases mothers were researched. Much of each section is dedicated to the father's position in the nazi hierarchy and to the childhoods of the children. I was amazed by how complete the father child relationship is recorded. This is well written, and footnoted. I would recommend this to anyone interested in the top nazis as humans and fathers. This book has the most detail on their lives outside the job and how it impacted their children. The book is not horribly graphic so is appropriate for young adult and older readers. It educates on the duality of the monster nazi and the caring father in some cases and in others the distant disciplinarian. I chose to review this after receiving a copy from Edelweiss.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sarah - All The Book Blog Names Are Taken

    I can't even imagine what life was like for those who knew and accepted what their fathers and mothers had done during the war. They are victims too. As for those living in denial, believing their fathers were great men, that they were heroes...no sympathy here. I can't even imagine what life was like for those who knew and accepted what their fathers and mothers had done during the war. They are victims too. As for those living in denial, believing their fathers were great men, that they were heroes...no sympathy here.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Erin

    I've been fascinated by the second world war since I learned about it in eighth grade. My fascination centered around the Holocaust, the attempt to exterminate the Jews. It seemed so clear who the good people and the bad people were. The Germans, Italians, and Japanese were bad; the Americans, British, and French were good. The Soviet Union was also bad, but it did help beat the Germans. Corrie Ten Boom's wrote about hiding Jews in the Holland home she shared with her father and sister in The Hi I've been fascinated by the second world war since I learned about it in eighth grade. My fascination centered around the Holocaust, the attempt to exterminate the Jews. It seemed so clear who the good people and the bad people were. The Germans, Italians, and Japanese were bad; the Americans, British, and French were good. The Soviet Union was also bad, but it did help beat the Germans. Corrie Ten Boom's wrote about hiding Jews in the Holland home she shared with her father and sister in The Hiding Place. Anne Frank wrote her diary about hiding in a similar place. And then the Americans entered the war and it ended. At least that's what is seemed like in the history books I read in high school. Later on I began to see the complexities, the complicity of the French. The British who were reluctant to go to war against the Germans. The French who collaborated with the Germans. The anti-Semitism in all the "good" countries. The racism and misogyny in all the countries, good and bad. But still, it seemed like history, long past. From time to time I would hear about Nazi hunters, but mostly that seemed remote. Nazis were mostly gone, weren't they? This book challenges that viewpoint, which in retrospect, seems naive. The past isn't past. Nazi viewpoints didn't disappear with the end of the war. Anti-Semitism and ideals of racial purity didn't evaporate when Hitler committed suicide. How did such recent history get swept into the past while people still lived? The author offers this observation: "By the late 1940s, a majority of West Germans had wanted to turn the page on the war and put an end to the denazification trials, which many resented as both a burden imposed by the Allies and an obstacle to the country’s democratization." In Germany, people blamed Hitler for everything. In the US, we felt moral superiority. We fought the Nazis and won. Greatest general, and all that. This book reviews the lives of the children of prominent Nazis. Some of them celebrated their fathers; some denied their fathers' complicity; some have gone to great lengths to separate themselves from their fathers, but have found it nearly impossible. The thing is, these children, were living only a few years ago. Some still live. And there are Nazi sympathizers who celebrate them, who celebrate the ideals of the party. These sympathizers never disappeared; they just went underground. And they live in Germany--and the United States. (I'm sure they are elsewhere too, but I really only know my country.) The author asks, "Can the past protect us from extremism, whatever its origins? It must be hoped. The generation of the Hitler Youth is dying out; four generations have followed it. It is no longer unthinkable to try to understand how any of us might have reacted in that era’s social, economic, and legal context." I don't think so. We see the rise of the far right all across the West. We see villification of people of color, of immigrants, of cultures other than our own. In the United States, we have never fully dealt with our past, filled with slavery, genocide, Jim Crow laws, discrimination. Instead, we condemned Germany--and South Africa, eventually. As a white middle class woman raised in the US, it has been easy for me to pretend like the past is past, evil has been defeated, justice has been achieved. And yet, all around me, I see racist comments become more common, even from the president, and good people, people who would never actually say those things, overlook those things in the name of achieving their own political goals. Can the past protect us from extremism? I wish that were true, but I am not hopeful.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Caroline

    Limited in scoop and not a great deal of depth to it. Focuses on the lives of some of the children of senior Nazis (Mengele's son, Hess' son, Goring's daughter etc), but it's all based on second-hand material and doesn't spend a great deal of time on any of them. Very little attempt at any kind of real psychological insight on the impact crimes of this nature have on a child. Overall an interesting topic but disappointing in execution. Limited in scoop and not a great deal of depth to it. Focuses on the lives of some of the children of senior Nazis (Mengele's son, Hess' son, Goring's daughter etc), but it's all based on second-hand material and doesn't spend a great deal of time on any of them. Very little attempt at any kind of real psychological insight on the impact crimes of this nature have on a child. Overall an interesting topic but disappointing in execution.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Simon

    The topic is interesting, although the children of the top leadership are getting thin on the ground. Still, the book is rather light. Save for Albert Speer, Jr. (also an architect) Crasnianski doesn't seem to have actually interviewed any of them. The most interesting are Edda Goering and Gudrun Himmler, both Daddy's Girls in the absolute worst sense. Gudrun showed up at Waffen-SS reunions (how are these a thing?) and Edda seemed to feel that because her grotesque father was always nice to her, The topic is interesting, although the children of the top leadership are getting thin on the ground. Still, the book is rather light. Save for Albert Speer, Jr. (also an architect) Crasnianski doesn't seem to have actually interviewed any of them. The most interesting are Edda Goering and Gudrun Himmler, both Daddy's Girls in the absolute worst sense. Gudrun showed up at Waffen-SS reunions (how are these a thing?) and Edda seemed to feel that because her grotesque father was always nice to her, Hermann gets a free pass on the whole genocide thing. Gudrun didn't come out and say there was no actual Holocaust, just that the number of deaths was exaggerated. I mean, what the actual hell? I was ten or so when Eichmann was hanged. The week before, there was an article in the New York Times about the Eichmanns in Argentina and how much it hurt them that their husband/father was about to get the chop. The story made me emotional, and my father heard me crying downstairs. When he called me, I trailed down to the living room, newspaper in hand. He sat me down and explained what Eichmann had done in terms that even a child could understand. And that was the end of any false sentimentality about the sufferings of unrepentant Nazi families. The only surprise? Where was Ivanka? Addendum: Later that night, my father and mother were having coffee in the kitchen. I was sitting at the dining room table and overheard him say: "Your son was crying over Nazis. What the hell is that about, Joan?"

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ugo

    I thought the thorough research work made by the author on this book contributes to making it one of the best testimony of one of the rather unknown consequences of the third reich. I came to know the book trough the great media covering it was offered in France while I was on a business trip there and was not disappointed by this powerful historic essay on guilt. I strongly recommend it to anyone looking for a good historic book or that is simply interested by the subject.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Cristina

    Well documented, very objectively written, concise and with interesting facts. I recommend!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Barbara Nutting

    This is an excellent look into the lives of the fathers, mothers and children and how they were affected by the atrocities of the Holocaust. The men were all Hitler devotees who murdered without conscience. Having just finished “Too Much and Not Enough” by Mary Trump, I can see the similarities to Fred Trump in every one of these evil Nazi fathers. I have always thought Donald Trump was Adolph Hitler reincarnated, maybe this is why. There are so many descriptive passages in the book describing Hi This is an excellent look into the lives of the fathers, mothers and children and how they were affected by the atrocities of the Holocaust. The men were all Hitler devotees who murdered without conscience. Having just finished “Too Much and Not Enough” by Mary Trump, I can see the similarities to Fred Trump in every one of these evil Nazi fathers. I have always thought Donald Trump was Adolph Hitler reincarnated, maybe this is why. There are so many descriptive passages in the book describing Hitler’s abhorrent behavior where you could insert Trump’s name instead. “Hitler did not take anyone’s advice” - sound familiar? Coronavirus anyone??

  10. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    This book was fascinating and horrifying. I can't imagine being in any of these people's shoes, but I was aghast at how many of them thought their father's had been treated unjustly and had therefore spent their lives trying to write books and positively promote their father's work. An interesting look at how having genocidal monsters as parents impacts the children's lives. This book was fascinating and horrifying. I can't imagine being in any of these people's shoes, but I was aghast at how many of them thought their father's had been treated unjustly and had therefore spent their lives trying to write books and positively promote their father's work. An interesting look at how having genocidal monsters as parents impacts the children's lives.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer Mangler

    It was interesting to read about which children still revere their fathers and which have denounced them, and it seems to have quite a bit to do with how close they were to their fathers during childhood. I can't imagine having to reckon with a legacy like that. It was interesting to read about which children still revere their fathers and which have denounced them, and it seems to have quite a bit to do with how close they were to their fathers during childhood. I can't imagine having to reckon with a legacy like that.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Petra

    I wish I'd known beforehand that the author only interviewed one of the children mentioned in this book. The information on the others is old and from elsewhere. After reading this I can't tell which of the children were interviewed. The book reads in a choppy manner of note-taking. It doesn't always read smoothly and jumps around a bit. Before the story of the children, there is a short summary of the fathers' lives to give a sense of what each child had to deal with. These children were dealt a I wish I'd known beforehand that the author only interviewed one of the children mentioned in this book. The information on the others is old and from elsewhere. After reading this I can't tell which of the children were interviewed. The book reads in a choppy manner of note-taking. It doesn't always read smoothly and jumps around a bit. Before the story of the children, there is a short summary of the fathers' lives to give a sense of what each child had to deal with. These children were dealt a bad hand. They were young during the events; most were too young to think or know politics. The war ended and so did their opulent, protected world. These kids range from disbelieving what history says about their fathers to believing yet being tied to them. Those that led the most opulent, secluded, fairy-tale lives were most apt to disbelieve history. Although scary and sad, it makes sense in a distorted way. Life was good. They had fresh air, freedom, servants, good & plentiful food, opulent mansions, their fathers doted on them. This was the only life they knew. Then, from one day to the next, it ended. They were on the run, hungry, living in small apartments often in crowded conditions (many siblings), their fathers were gone, schools & people rejected them because of their names. From a child's point of view, National Socialism must have seemed good, therefore their fathers are good and history lied. Those in this book that most defended their fathers led a truly opulent life during the war and never again. Sadly, these people who disbelieve history continue to endorse a National Socialism party and want to go back to the old ways. Those who turned away from their fathers had cold, distant relationships with them during the war. All in all, old interviews rehashed. Interestng if this is the first book read on the thoughts of the children but otherwise short of detail and repetitive. One quarter of the book is notes from the annotations.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Nancy Bielski

    No real revelations and the writing felt disorganized.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Stavros Kanakaris

    Extremely well researched, balanced, informative and well written book. The many anecdotes such as the girl wanting to eat strawberries close to the extermination camp but is being warned by its mother to wash off the ashes from the nearby crematoria first, brings the story to life in intriguing and often horrific ways. The book answers many questions how the offspring of some of history's worst criminals deal with this legacy, but leaves you also with many other thoughts to contemplate. The ton Extremely well researched, balanced, informative and well written book. The many anecdotes such as the girl wanting to eat strawberries close to the extermination camp but is being warned by its mother to wash off the ashes from the nearby crematoria first, brings the story to life in intriguing and often horrific ways. The book answers many questions how the offspring of some of history's worst criminals deal with this legacy, but leaves you also with many other thoughts to contemplate. The tone is respectful towards all people involved, it is up to the reader to evaluate and, if need be, judge.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Fran Johnson

    The sons and daughters of high ranking Nazis have lived with their shame and coped with it in various ways. It was particularly difficult because many of them had a loving relationship and were treated well by these fathers who were monsters to society. At age four, five, or ten they had privileged lives, surrounded by loving parents. They were innocent children who discovered the monstrous actions of their fathers. This is a study of how the children dealt with this and how they grew up with th The sons and daughters of high ranking Nazis have lived with their shame and coped with it in various ways. It was particularly difficult because many of them had a loving relationship and were treated well by these fathers who were monsters to society. At age four, five, or ten they had privileged lives, surrounded by loving parents. They were innocent children who discovered the monstrous actions of their fathers. This is a study of how the children dealt with this and how they grew up with these skeletons in their closets.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Joanna Brady

    An interesting look at the effects of parental influence on children. I felt sorry for most of these kids, some growing up in a villa or a palace, and suddenly being a pariah living in a tiny apartment in shame. Thinking of your father as a war hero one day and a monster the next. It couldn't have been easy. An interesting look at the effects of parental influence on children. I felt sorry for most of these kids, some growing up in a villa or a palace, and suddenly being a pariah living in a tiny apartment in shame. Thinking of your father as a war hero one day and a monster the next. It couldn't have been easy.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Peter R Wetton

    A very interesting and thought provoking book. In the eighties I did a lot of business in Germany and I remember a high level meeting with company executives where the German CEO stood and apologized for the war.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Josh Marshall

    Gives an interesting insight into the lives of children who, for the most part, had no idea of the roles their fathers played in the Third Reich

  19. 5 out of 5

    Alicia C Gephart

    Good short read. Interesting to hear about the children as well as the men and the wives.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Grommit

    Looks like there are a series of books on this subject. This author's goal is to explore what happened to the children of the Nazi leaders. But, to do that, the author spends a little time reviewing who the leaders were: Himmler (Mr. SS), Goring (air force chief), Hess (Hitler's #3 who flew to England to bring a peace plan), Frank ("The Butcher" of Poland's Ghettos), Morman (rose to #2), Hoss (Auschwitz commandant), Speer (Architect), and Mengele (human experiments). These names are familiar to Looks like there are a series of books on this subject. This author's goal is to explore what happened to the children of the Nazi leaders. But, to do that, the author spends a little time reviewing who the leaders were: Himmler (Mr. SS), Goring (air force chief), Hess (Hitler's #3 who flew to England to bring a peace plan), Frank ("The Butcher" of Poland's Ghettos), Morman (rose to #2), Hoss (Auschwitz commandant), Speer (Architect), and Mengele (human experiments). These names are familiar to students of these events. But they all had kids...and what did the kids know? As it turns out, they knew very little in the period of 1939-45 because they were young and they were shielded for the most part, even living far from the scenes of their fathers atrocities. And the focus? Did we learn what impact their fathers' deeds had on them? Well, sort of. The book is short (199 pages), copiously annotated, and pages must be spent recalling the fathers' deeds. This leaves a rather superficial review of the kids. Some denied their fathers were monsters. Some claimed that they were just following orders (ah...that one again). And a few actually were shamed by their fathers. Some ran and hid. But some others kept their names and stayed in Germany. Ouch. Overall, I hoped for a bit more in depth analysis.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Christy

    This book was interesting, taking a look at the lives of 8 children whose fathers were some of the most well known Nazi leaders and criminals. They had different reactions and relationships with their fathers, both during the Holocaust and WW2 and after the war. "To move forward as adults, some chose to downplay their fathers' voluntary participation in the Nazis' war crimes. Others refected outright their fathers and the love they felt for them." It was really sad to imagine what it would be l This book was interesting, taking a look at the lives of 8 children whose fathers were some of the most well known Nazi leaders and criminals. They had different reactions and relationships with their fathers, both during the Holocaust and WW2 and after the war. "To move forward as adults, some chose to downplay their fathers' voluntary participation in the Nazis' war crimes. Others refected outright their fathers and the love they felt for them." It was really sad to imagine what it would be like to have to live in the shadow of that legacy, in a society that criminalized the children and wives as well. I am sure that similar stories can be imparted on children of any criminal. We are not responsible for the sins of our fathers but society has a hard time not punishing for them. I only gave it 3 stars as it was sometimes rough to read as it was a translation. Also, for being titled "The Children of Nazis", a much larger amount of pages was dedicated to each of the fathers. While necessary to have context, I really yearned to hear more about each of the children. But, I am sure that there may not be that much information out there as many of these children have not passed away themselves or are trying to distance themselves from their fathers.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ubah Khasimuddin

    Interesting enough, very easy read, the author gives you snippets of these people, nothing deep dive but you get an introduction of the child, than their parent (what they did, who they were in the Nazi machinery) the child's life during the Third Reich and finally what happened after the fall of Hitler and Nazis. All of the author's information comes from third party resources so she has to extrapolate a lot, but you can see that those children who had good relations with their fathers tended t Interesting enough, very easy read, the author gives you snippets of these people, nothing deep dive but you get an introduction of the child, than their parent (what they did, who they were in the Nazi machinery) the child's life during the Third Reich and finally what happened after the fall of Hitler and Nazis. All of the author's information comes from third party resources so she has to extrapolate a lot, but you can see that those children who had good relations with their fathers tended to not believe that their father's were terrible people, on the flip side those who had distant relations were more ready to believe the worse of their parent. I would recommend this book to those, like me, who like reading about this time period and who also want to try to understand why and how people think and do certain actions. My only real big complaint with the book is that at times the pieces were too short, some details glossed over, other silly details included that didn't make sense (who cares what Albert Speer Jr's architectural style is? how does it relate to his relationship with his father?).

  23. 4 out of 5

    Burt

    The children pay for the sins of the parents. It’s an old story, but it still happens. This book was a remainder from Edward R. Hamilton and it turned out to be well worth the pittance that I paid for it. Author Tania Crasnianski writes the biographies of the children of eight, high-ranking Nazis. For the most part, Crasnianski allows the reader to draw his or her own conclusions. However, at times, Crasnianski slips into cliche and the story loses its momentum. But, on the whole, it’s a good rea The children pay for the sins of the parents. It’s an old story, but it still happens. This book was a remainder from Edward R. Hamilton and it turned out to be well worth the pittance that I paid for it. Author Tania Crasnianski writes the biographies of the children of eight, high-ranking Nazis. For the most part, Crasnianski allows the reader to draw his or her own conclusions. However, at times, Crasnianski slips into cliche and the story loses its momentum. But, on the whole, it’s a good read. The most-interesting aspect of the story is that there is no standard way to cope with having an infamous parent. Some of these people are part of the neo-Nazi movement; others are on the far left. Another group avoids politics entirely. But all of them are influenced their families’ pasts. Many try to make sense of how a loving parent could have also willingly participated in genocide against other people’s children. I’m glad that I read this one. I wouldn’t call it essential reading, but it’s great food for thought.

  24. 4 out of 5

    spike marlin

    This is a short book with eight stories about the children of major Nazi leaders, including Himmler, Göring, Hess, Frank, Bormann, Hoss, Speer, and Megele. The stories reveal each parent’s participation in the Nazi atrocities and then how the children reacted to it after the war. Most of the children who were quite young during the war found out about their father’s role after the war from outside sources. Some chose not to denounce their fathers and instead grow up to become apologist for their This is a short book with eight stories about the children of major Nazi leaders, including Himmler, Göring, Hess, Frank, Bormann, Hoss, Speer, and Megele. The stories reveal each parent’s participation in the Nazi atrocities and then how the children reacted to it after the war. Most of the children who were quite young during the war found out about their father’s role after the war from outside sources. Some chose not to denounce their fathers and instead grow up to become apologist for their father’s role and to try to rehabilitate their names. Other chose to reveal and denounce there fathers. The book shows a curious correlation between the fathers love and time spent with his child and the way the child embraced or reviled their father’s memory after the war. The book is a translation and the translation is not always well done. It is a book worth reading.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Stern

    Excellent first book by the author! A different approach to this historical period that allows readers to immerse themselves in the intimate life of certain actors of the Second World War. It is a book rich in historical information with a remarkable style of writing! The body of work is very well documented, includes a multiple of portraits of children who have tried to solve these questions each in their own way. The book is addictive, sometimes terrifying. A very interesting subject that is v Excellent first book by the author! A different approach to this historical period that allows readers to immerse themselves in the intimate life of certain actors of the Second World War. It is a book rich in historical information with a remarkable style of writing! The body of work is very well documented, includes a multiple of portraits of children who have tried to solve these questions each in their own way. The book is addictive, sometimes terrifying. A very interesting subject that is very rarely discussed. This book is very well written and where the author allows the reader to make up his mind and judge. Sober and pleasant writing that makes a subject painful and often incomprehensible, accessible to all. A book to read, without hesitation!

  26. 5 out of 5

    Ana-Maria Bujor

    This was an interesting read, but I could feel the author did not have access to these people so there wasn't as much depth as I wished. I like the fact that it covered the entire spectrum, from children who grew up idolizing their parents and who decided to continue their legacy to those who utterly despise the ones that gave them life. A big chunk of the book is spent analyzing the deeds of people like Hess, Goring or Frank, but for me that added little information. It is a very good book thou This was an interesting read, but I could feel the author did not have access to these people so there wasn't as much depth as I wished. I like the fact that it covered the entire spectrum, from children who grew up idolizing their parents and who decided to continue their legacy to those who utterly despise the ones that gave them life. A big chunk of the book is spent analyzing the deeds of people like Hess, Goring or Frank, but for me that added little information. It is a very good book though as an introduction. I just wish there was more information, while on the other hand understanding this might mean a certain level of voyeurism. I can totally understand why most of these folks would rather be left alone.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Julie Heinze

    This book was very good. Everyone knows who these children's fathers were and the atrocities that they perpetrated against not only the Jews but also anyone who did not fit the Aryan stereotype. However, most of the children were too young to know what or who their fathers were in the Military sense. They only knew that one day dad was gone. Then in the aftermath of World War II, these children had to grow up knowing their fathers were war criminals and these children had to carry on the family n This book was very good. Everyone knows who these children's fathers were and the atrocities that they perpetrated against not only the Jews but also anyone who did not fit the Aryan stereotype. However, most of the children were too young to know what or who their fathers were in the Military sense. They only knew that one day dad was gone. Then in the aftermath of World War II, these children had to grow up knowing their fathers were war criminals and these children had to carry on the family name during the postwar period. These children had to live with the sins of the fathers. It was an excellent book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Julie - Open Books_Open Doors

    An interesting subject less common in the literature chronicling the Third Reich. Well researched and even-handed. It's a fair and compelling exploration of reconciling a child's experience of his/her father and monstrous acts they committed - learned of from sources outside their families. Further, how these children carry the burden of their fathers' actions and the direction it sets for their lives. An interesting subject less common in the literature chronicling the Third Reich. Well researched and even-handed. It's a fair and compelling exploration of reconciling a child's experience of his/her father and monstrous acts they committed - learned of from sources outside their families. Further, how these children carry the burden of their fathers' actions and the direction it sets for their lives.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Matheny

    I'm giving 5 stars for the writing and research the author excelled at. I enjoyed her viewpoint. These people were twisted and evil.....and horrible parents. Some of their children grew up to be decent people, some continued in their fathers' footsteps of hatred and evil. It was a bit difficult to follow my "don't start one book without finishing one" rule....the stories were a bit depressing. Well worth the read. I'm giving 5 stars for the writing and research the author excelled at. I enjoyed her viewpoint. These people were twisted and evil.....and horrible parents. Some of their children grew up to be decent people, some continued in their fathers' footsteps of hatred and evil. It was a bit difficult to follow my "don't start one book without finishing one" rule....the stories were a bit depressing. Well worth the read.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Karen Lawsing

    I found the parallels between the current discord in our country and Nazism in Germany to be numerous and chilling. I have greater understanding of the white supremacy movement; this understanding doesn’t mean tolerance. In fact, I am sure that we need to have a clear policy on how to address this issue or we shall be overwhelmed. These groups are sophisticated in their use of social media and how to tap into the disaffection of great swathes of our society.

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