I saw this audio book in my local library and it sounded interesting, so I picked it up.
Stats: Published in June, 2022. Print is 464 pages, audio book is 11 CDs (13′ 49″). Narrated by Nancy Peterson and Ann Marie Gideon
Blurb: Berlin, 1930—When a wave of change sweeps a radical political party to power, Sofie von Meyer Rhodes’s academic husband benefits from the ambitions of its newly elected chancellor. Although Sofie and Jürgen do not share the social views growing popular in Hitler’s Germany, Jürgen’s position with its burgeoning rocket program changes their diminishing fortunes for the better. But as Sofie watches helplessly, her beloved Berlin begins to transform, forcing her to consider what they must sacrifice morally for their young family’s security, and what the price for their neutrality will be.
Twenty years later, Jürgen is one of the many German scientists offered pardons for their part in the war, and taken to America to work for its fledgling space program. For Sofie, this is the chance to exorcise the ghosts that have followed her across the ocean, and make a fresh start in her adopted country. But her neighbors aren’t as welcoming or as understanding as she had hoped. When scandalous rumors about the Rhodes family’s affiliation with Hitler’s regime spreads, idle gossip turns to bitter rage, and the act of violence that results will tear apart Sofie’s community and her family before the truth is finally revealed.
What I liked: Most everything, really. The narrators did a wonderful job, to start. And I really enjoyed how we got to see the beginning of the rise of the Nazi party, how it wheedled it’s way into power over time. It all seemed very plausible. And equally plausible for the people that didn’t like the Nazi party to stay silent initially until they no longer could do much about it without putting themselves or their families in danger. And the flip side, the families that got sucked into the party. This juxtaposed with the life of Lizzie and her brother in Texas, then Alabama at the same time and how the American and German lives come together after the war. The characters on both sides all seem real and their situations understandable.
What I didn’t like: The only thing I don’t quite buy is how Lizzie stays married to Calvin for so long. (small spoiler) Or really the other way around. Most men wouldn’t live in a loveless/sexless marriage for that long, at least when they are young.