Ciska's Book Chest

I am an eclectic reader with preferences for crime/thriller/suspense, historical fiction, literature and contemporary fiction. For more books and other bookish posts visit my blog at Ciska's Book Chest

Review: The Aftermath, Rhidian Brook

The Aftermath Rhidian Brook cover

Hamburg, 1946. Thousands wander the rubble, lost and homeless. Charged with overseeing the rebuilding of this devastated city and the de-Nazification of its broken people, Captain Lewis is stationed in a grand house on the outskirts of the city, where he will be joined by his grieving wife Rachael and only remaining son Edmund.
But rather than force its owners, a German widower and his traumatised daughter, out onto the streets, Lewis insists that the two families live together. In this charged and claustrophobic atmosphere, all must confront their true selves as enmity and grief give way to passion and betrayal.Rhidian Brook (born 1964) is a novelist, screenwriter and broadcaster. He lives with his wife and two children in London.

I had seen the book in the shops under its Dutch title 'Het huis in Kreis Pinneberg' which sounded intriguing but with the large pile of books I have I did not consider in getting myself a copy. But my book group decided on reading this so there I went. I did buy myself an English version though because I was not able to get used to the pronunciation of the title and kept reading Kris Peinenberg.
This book is painful and emotional. There is loss, love, goodbye, estranged people and so much loss. Captain Lewis is a hero, being able to see beyond the guilt question. But I did feel for Rachael too who lost her child in an extremely scary situation. I guess that was the whole point in the book making you see trough all the eyes. Same for Freda and Stefan Lubert who lost so much too but where on the 'wrong' side. I think the way Rhidian Brook managed to write all of these characters, make them believable and actually making me the reader being able to understand them all is extraordinary.
The story itself is predictable and you can guess what is going to happen but that does not matter in this book filled with raw emotion.

The Aftermath
Author: Rhidian Brook
Publisher: Penguin
Pages: 328
Format: Hardcover
ISBN-10: 0670921122
ISBN-13: 9780670921126
Publisher: eBook | Hardcover | AudioBook