The Kindly Ones

The Kindly Ones

A Novel

Book - 2009
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The fictional memoir of Dr. Max Aue, a former Nazi officer who survived the war and has reinvented himself, many years later, as a middle-class entrepreneur and family man in northern France. Max is an intellectual, the consummate bureaucrat - and a cold-blooded assassin.
Publisher: Toronto : McClelland & Stewart, 2009.
ISBN: 9780771051531
Branch Call Number: LIT
Characteristics: 983 pages ; 24 cm


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Chapel_Hill_KenMc Dec 17, 2014

Brutally detailed fictional memoir of an SS officer participating in the extermination of Jews. A committed Nazi ideologue, the narrator presents himself to us as a rational actor who offers no apologies for obeying orders and carrying out his "duty." Yet he is also shown to be a psychopath who experiences episodes of hallucinogenic detachment and self-loathing. A devious narrative that challenges us to examine the gradual series of decisions or non-decisions that lead from national pride to state-sanctioned murder and finally genocide. At 1,000 pages, however, Littell could use a more assertive editor.

boonerator Mar 12, 2013

At at 1000 pages, be prepared to skip large sections. The protagonist has no redeeming qualities and the writing is often scatalogical and graohic.

The history in it is massive, it follows him through the horrors and describes the bureaucratic games of the Nazis, which is difficult to read.

For the history, read "Bloodlands, Eastern Europe between Hitler and Stalin." Or any of the last few Bernie Gunther novels from Philipp Kerr.
Shorter and less disgusting.

Jan 25, 2012

OMG this is monster book. Probably too long, but the detail is amazing. How did Littell ever accomplish so much detailed research? Herr Aue is quite a character - completely amoral and at the same time cultured and dedicated to his task. I really don't like the long paragraphs or long sentences. I would recommend this but not to my Jewish friends as it might to too hard to take the hideous acts of violence. It is beyond me how anyone would be talented enough to write such a book.

Not for the faint of heart. Some translation errors.

Nov 12, 2009

A rather grim read but rather interesting.

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Nov 16, 2009

Dexter_Morgan thinks this title is suitable for 20 years and over


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