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Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Forty Autumns

What would it feel like to make a decision in one moment that would forever affect your life for the next forty years? Imagine your family having to make that decision for you? To lead a life of freedom or one of tyranny and oppression. I believe more of us need to learn the stories from those who lived without freedom. A historical journey into Germany's blackened past where at one conjuncture to defy freedom, a wall went up to separate one region of Germany for another. For what reason? Could it happen again?

In the novel Forty Autumns by Nina Willner, she shares her grandparents history which undoubtedly became her own legacy of a tough choice they had to face when totalitarian leaders ran Germany the way they saw fit. All about control. Taking away from the people at the conclusion of WWII, Germany tried to find a way to rise to the top again. In a nutshell all it did was point the world's eyes to the atrocities it was trying to hide while saving face to the world. Families were separated overnight. While others tried to escape in droves, most were shot without any sense of compassion or empathy, believing the propaganda they were being spoon fed made it justified. Overnight the wall went up in hopes of preventing any more East Germans from fleeing the country. With it any viable means of labor went with it.

This is one families journey through forty years. How they survived against the odds. How they learned to accept what was happening in order to stay together even though they didn't agree with it. How they managed to save one daughters life in an effort to give them the truth that could only come from the outside world away from East Germany. How one patriarch of the family Opa, vowed to do whatever he could to keep his family safe and protected even if it went against everything he believed and how one matriarch, Oma was the driving support behind keeping the family strong and loved, well-fed and held together in a city of their own that was falling apart.

I received Forty Autumns by Nina Willner compliments of William Morrow, a division of Harper Collins Publishers. I believe everyone needs to read this book, because it seems like our current nation is slowly striving to rewrite the history that needs to be told and shared, otherwise we will be doomed to repeat it. I clearly see signs in the works that this world might be headed to the very thing that should be left behind and that communism doesn't work. The power does not lie with the government but with the people. We need to know their stories and that is why this is such a critical book to be read and studied. I am horrified at the things we never studied in history. I guess to glaze over it in our history books in a very subtle paragraphs is an easy way to take out what should be known to those who faced it. These are the stories that should be shared. For this reason I am giving this book, a 5 out of 5 stars. There are some great historical notes following the book and some epilogues that highlight what happened later to those featured in the book. This has some amazing photos the author shares so you can honestly feel what it was like in those times.

For more information about Forty Autumns, Nina Willner or where you can pick up a copy of this book today, please click on the links below:

You can find Nina Willner on Facebook to stay up to date on all her latest projects.

For more reviews on Forty Autumns, please visit Harper Collins Publisher's website. 

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