City of Women

City of Women

Audiobook CD - 2012
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1943, in the height of World War II. With the men taken by the army, Berlin has become a city of women. While her husband fights on the Eastern Front, Sigrid Schroder is the model soldier's wife. She goes to work every day, does as much with her rations as she can, and cares for her meddling mother-in-law, all while ignoring the horrific immoralities of the regime. But behind the facade is an entirely different Sigrid. She dreams of her former Jewish lover, who is lost in the chaos of the war.
Publisher: New York : Penguin Audio, p2012.
ISBN: 9781611761276
Characteristics: 11 sound discs (13 hr.) : digital ; 4 3/4 in.
Additional Contributors: Bertish, Suzanne


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Jan 08, 2014

It took me a long time after finishing this book to write my review. That’s because there were things I disliked about it rather intensely – such as the graphic description of Sigrid, who’s married, having sex with a stranger in a darkened movie theater. However, there is much to recommend City of Women. Specifically, I liked the way Gillham unfolds Sigrid coming awake to the reality of Jews’ fates as Hitler intensifies his agenda to eradicate them from Berlin. The best part of this book – in addition to the cloak-and-dagger, who-can-be-trusted stuff – is Sigrid becoming her own person, apart from the influences of her dreadful mother-in-law, her racist colleague and her done-with-life husband, even in the midst of war.

Gillham effectively captures what it must be like to live in a desperate city where people must always guard themselves, from countrymen as much as from the wartime enemy. Fear and suspicion are constant companions. While most seem to believe the only way to survive is to avert their eyes and be as invisible as possible, Sigrid becomes a woman who risks everything, even though she doesn’t have to, to help Jews survive. Her transition, which Gillham develops believably and commendably, is the highlight of the book.

Oct 12, 2012

Great story...very well narrated...if I have even the tiniest complaint, it is that the stroy was full of just a few too many coincidences.....Otherwise, I loved it


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