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Publisher's Summary

Knowing New York Times-best-selling author Philip Kerr's delight in subterfuge and obfuscation, listeners can rest assured that nothing is what it seems when Bernie Gunther discovers war criminals living freely in Europe.

It is 1956, and Bernie Gunther has a new name (Christoph Ganz), a clean passport, a chip on his shoulder, and a menial low-paying job in Munich. And then an old friend arrives to repay a debt. He encourages Bernie to take a job as a claims adjuster in a major German insurance company.

Which is why Bernie, as Christoph, finds himself in Athens investigating a claim by Siegfried Witzel, a brutish former Wehrmacht soldier who served in Greece during the war. Witzel's supposed losses are immense, and, even worse, they may have originally belonged to Greek Jews deported to Auschwitz. But when Bernie tries to confront Witzel, he finds that somebody else has gotten to him first. What he has now is a dead man: Both his eyes have been shot out.

Enter Lieutenant Leventis, who is working on a recent case with the same MO. Both deaths match the highly particular style of a killing 15 years prior, during the height of the war. Back then, a young Leventis suspected an SS officer whose connection to the German government made him untouchable. He's kept that name on his lips all these years, waiting for his second chance at justice.

And while a pattern like this may be Leventis' best opportunity to close an old case, there's a much more sinister truth to acknowledge: A killer has returned to Athens, or, even worse, he may never have left.

©2018 Philip Kerr (P)2018 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"Adding an arch tone to his delivery, narrator John Lee provides an extra layer of listening pleasure to the thirteenth installment of the adventures of Bernie Gunther... Lee handles the accents and colorful characters, as well as Bernie's observations and the shifts in pacing, with steady hands.... Lee and Kerr combine their storytelling talents to make this visit to the dark streets and alleys of Berlin bone chilling and emotionally satisfying." (AudioFile

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Rena
  • Silver Spring, MD
  • 04-10-18

Series gets better and better

Philip Kerr’s Bernie Gunther novels are a treasure of historical fiction. Bernie may be aging (tell me about it) but he is no less wry, charming, and as ethical as his times permit. Narrator John Lee rises to the challenge of bringing him to life beautifully. More, more, more please.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

The worst Gunther book I have read

Gunther is now just a caricature of a noirish PI, referring to his romantic interest as "Sugar" and going into great detail about her breasts. Instead of dialogue the Greek characters give long monologues about history; in some cases difeerent characters even repeat the same wikipedia like history lesson. Gunther can be over the top in his negative comments about women, including one about a woman in her early 50s as being part any possibility of romance (she wasn't ugly, he comments, just old). I used to love the sense of place and atmosphere. There was no sense of Greece, just Gunther complaining about Greek food, Greek music, Greek wine, etc.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Kerr's Best Yet Bernie Gunther Saga

From start to finish this latest installment of the Bernie Gunther series is Kerr at his best. This time the action takes place in the 1950's Germany and Greece. As always Kerr brings in real villains from Nazi Germany and puts Bernie right in the middle. Its a must listen/read made even more so with Philip Kerr's recent death and the silencing of Bernies sarcasm and never play by the rules for all time. (Well almost as he finished one more book before he passed away and I for one can't wait to read/hear it)

As always John Lee brings Bernie and there rest of the characters to life in another 5 star performance as he continues to be one of the best narrators recording today.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Ronald
  • Monroe, CT, United States
  • 05-14-18

The real gift is Phillip Kerr's Legacy

There was a crushing sense of regret when I heard about Phillip Kerr's passing. The latest Bernie Gunther novel was another delight to listen to, and digest the cynical protagonist as part of the human condition. This was the greatest gift of the author's talent. John Lee's narration was outstanding as usual. The choice of location and the political turmoil of post-war Greece was a refreshing history lesson. I understand that there is one more novel on the way that Phillip penned before he passed. I'm sure it will be excellent. If you haven't read the Bernie Gunther series, start from the very first novel. It has been an enjoyable literary ride.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

I have a little crush on Bernie Gunter....

Bernie's the kind of man you'd like on your side in a pinch. I love this character, he's funny, cynical, a hopeless romantic, enjoys a drink and is an incredibly entertaining and clever crime solver. Just my type to spend time with in the grip of John Lee's outstanding narration. John does a great job of bringing this character to life, he really IS Bernie Gunther. I can't recommend this and all other books in the series enough. You can read this as a stand alone book, or start from the beginning of the series. Download it and enjoy!

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    4 out of 5 stars

Another wonderful Bernie mystery!

Phillip Kerr who died recently will be sorely missed, Kerr had the unique ability to tell a story with vigorous prose, set a scene quickly and take you to another era . Kerr wrote much in the tradition of Raymond Chandler and his protagonist Bernie Gunther is a Philip Marlowe type who somehow survives the Wiemar Republic, the Third Reich and finds himself in Athens for yet another adventure. Here he is in mufti hiding from his problematic past, as claims adjuster seeking a WWII treasure trove, dodging former Nazi's such as Alois Brunner , or corrupt police officers of all nationalities and still he manages to maintain a sense of humor and a small measure of dignity.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Post WW 2 Germany and Greece in a nutshell.

OK I could listen to John Lee read the ingredients to a shampoo and enjoy it. So that's done. I have never read what Germany was like on a personal level after the war. We get an eyeful here. The story is believable and it allows the listener to see what a mess was made of social political order of Europe afterward. Of course we are informed of this mess on the coat tails of a riveting search for the truth story that will have you on the edge of your seat. Kerr always tells a tale that is a wee bit dark or sinister but fascinating. If this was a movie revue the little figure would be out of his seat clapping... Good writing. True Art.

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  • Zeta
  • Philadelphia, PA
  • 06-26-18

I can't get enough Bernie Gunther

John Lee inhabits Bernie. He is just terrific. The writing is so good. I'm so sad that Philip Kerr died. His plots are so well crafted. I enjoyed this book and the Greek setting.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Fascinating read

Just the right amount of world weary cynicism and a hero trying to find the right path. Well written and well narrated.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Fay
  • Seattle, WA, United States
  • 05-14-18

Sorry this is the end

This book, while it had some good stuff in itself, was obviously a set up to take Bernie Gunther in a new direction, by making a connection with Nazi hunting Israelis. Unfortuantely, now that Phillip Kerr is dead we will never know where he planned to go with it.