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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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  • 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.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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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.

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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.

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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.

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Another Kerr novel that keeps you thinking

Well done and the narrator is interesting. Couldn't turn it off. Love the character development.

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Everything you’ve come to love about Bernie Gunther!

Snapppy hard-boiled dialogue filled with sarcasm, survival humor, and a dose of post-war reality. Philip Kerr has the formula down and I look forward to the next.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Not his best

Disappointed. I think the author has run out of witticisms and quips. The narrator didn’t distinguish the voices enough. Sometimes it wasn’t clear who was speaking.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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sadly the last Berny Gunther story

Philip Kerr, the author passed away just before this book was published. I'm sure it was unexpected, because Bernie was clearly on his way to another series of adventures at the end of Greeks bearing Gifts. I sure hope someone can continue the series.

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Great book in a great series

Philip Kerr pays attention to detail and is a wonderful storyteller. John Lee is an outstanding narrator. I never tire of reading or listening to Bernie Gunther's adventures. Listen to one and you will be hooked on the whole series as well.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Another fantastic Bernie Gunther novel

Brilliantly using Bernie Gunther’s life before, during and after WW2, Kerr takes us into some the darkest crevices of Europe’s history.... and reveals some very uncomfortable truths.
As with the two or three novels that preceded this one, we discover the extent to which the Allies ignored some of the worst crimes in human history. They were largely motivated by greed, yet used the fight against communism as their excuse the allow so many senior Nazis to not only evade punishment, but to be leading participants in Germany’s post-war economic miracle.

When as a child in the 60s and 70s, my family encountered Germans on European vacations, my Dad would always say: “I wonder what they did in the War?” As it turns out, he was right: they were very likely to have been Nazis.

Adenauer was the leading architect of post-war Germany and it was he that either commuted the sentences of convicted murders, torturers, thrives and rapists.. or stopped prosecuting them. Worse still, and clearly not sated by killing 6,000,000 Jews, his intelligence services assisted and armed Israel’s enemies.
And yet this great crime of ignoring or forgiving known Nazi murderers was also carried out by many of the new governments of countries previously occupied by Germany. To pursue those of their citizens who assisted Germany’s annihilation of Jews, would have revealed the enormous numbers of them. In countries like Greece, much of the post-WW2 government were beneficiaries of the robbery and murder of it Jews.
Thank you Philip Kerr, for letting people know the extent to which so many Nazi crimes were ignored.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful