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Editorial Reviews

The Gestapo: A History of Horror is a thoroughly researched and ultimately terrifying in-depth study of the inner workings of history's most ruthless and deadly secret police. Jacques Delarue, former member of the French resistance, combines firsthand accounts from his own run-ins with the Gestapo with information from countless interviews and primary documents. The Gestapo: A History of Horror is excellently performed by Eric Brooks whose clear and methodical narration conveys the weight of one of history's greatest tragedies.

Publisher's Summary

A history of Nazi Germany's secret police written by one of their victims, with a new introduction by the author.

From 1933 to 1945, the Gestapo was Nazi Germany's chief instrument of counter-espionage, political suppression, and terror. Jacques Delarue, a saboteur arrested by the Nazis in occupied France, chronicles how the land of Beethoven elevated sadism to a fine art. The Gestapo: A History of Horror draws upon Delarue's interviews with ex-Gestapo agents to deliver a multi-layered history of the force whose work included killing student resisters, establishing Aryan eugenic unions, and implementing the Final Solution. This is a probing look at the Gestapo and the fanatics and megalomaniacs who made it such a successful and heinous organization: Barbie, Eichmann, Himmler, Heydrich, Mller. The Gestapo's notorious reign led to the murder of millions. The Gestapo is an important documentation of what they did and how they did it.

©1962 Histoire de la Gestapo by Jacques Delarue, World copyright ibrarie Arthème Fayard, 1962. (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Interesting Information but....

Where does The Gestapo rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It was okay but hard to stay interested because of the narrator but not the worst I have heard.

Any additional comments?

I love WW2 and the stories of the Allies and the Axis and this one had really good info but not they best. I still recommend it....at least once.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Once read never fogotten!!

Where does The Gestapo rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is a great book. It reveals the Gestapo as it was, as it became, and what it caused - the uncountable lives that this wickness has consumed!!! Please after reading this book THINK the next time you or someone else calls someone, organization, and Government NAZIS GESTAPO what it really means - after reading this you will be changed.

This book is without peers for it reveals what once was a power for evil that once rule the huge land mass of EUROPE! This must never happen again!

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Gestapo?

How the people so willing give up their freedom

Have you listened to any of Eric Brooks’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Excellent dictation and tone, he was terrific!

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Yes, it makes me realize that todays persons do not want to know, do not care to know as it could not happen again - sad so very sad!

Any additional comments?

Please buy and read

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • bethany
  • SALEM, NH, United States
  • 06-15-14

i could fall asleep listening to the narrator

What did you like best about this story?

the background information was well done

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Eric Brooks?

anyone

Any additional comments?

truly the information was interesting but the narrator killed it for me

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Atrocious narration

What disappointed you about The Gestapo?

The narration was atrocious. Whoever enlisted the narrator either ran out of money or had no command of the German language. It becomes painfully obvious that nobody had a clue how to pronounce anything German and it makes it unbearable to listen to the book.

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Gestapo?

The actual content is great. Very thoroughly researched.

What didn’t you like about Eric Brooks’s performance?

The narration was inexcusably bad.

Any additional comments?

Would be a great paper read but save your money.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent Book but Execrable Narrator

What would have made The Gestapo better?

This is well-researched and well-written & accessibly translated history. It's an outstanding addition to the institutional biography genre. Unfortunately, the completely clueless narrator ruined the listening experience for me. Three crucial tips for all recorded-books industry folks:1) Select a narrator who speaks English. I'm not sure where in the UK Mr. Brooks learned to speak aloud, but he gives one the impression of a disinterested schoolmaster administering a scolding to a dull boy--short words & lots of pauses. Worse (from a listener's perspective) Brooks often gives the impression that he can't get the narration out, that he is physically wrestling with his lungs and tongue to push the words from his mouth. More's the pity that Rex Harrison is not available to instruct this latter-day Eliza.2) Select a narrator with at least a passing familiarity with any foreign language that will feature prominently in the narrative. Mr. Brooks has apparently never heard spoken German, and is blissfully unaware that its diction and pronunciation differ markedly from whatever dialect of "English" he speaks. When I shared bits of the narration with my German colleagues they howled at his ludicrous butchery of their mother tongue.3) Select a narrator with the expected audience in mind. Narration by an American would have been just fine. Serious readers desire rather more skill and an indication of some erudition in their narrators; vile accents just detract from the experience. If you must use a British reader, for God's sake find someone with the rhetorical abilities of Winston Churchill (or at least Lawrence Olivier!)

What other book might you compare The Gestapo to and why?

The recent biography of Reinhard Heydrich by Robert Gerwarth is an excellent companion piece, better read after The Gestapo.

Would you be willing to try another one of Eric Brooks’s performances?

I would sooner have pieces of my anatomy removed than endure another of his performances.

What character would you cut from The Gestapo?

The narrator.

Any additional comments?

I want my money back.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting, but awful to listen to

Would you try another book from Jacques Delarue and Mervyn Savill (translator) and/or Eric Brooks?

Maybe. The content was all well-researched and contained a few tidbits that were new to me (I've read/listened avidly to WWII books). It is an interesting blend of small details and big events that makes the narrative come alive. However (and this is a big one) it seriously lacks in punctuation. I don't know if the original version contained so many run-on sentences, if the translator failed, or if the narrator just inserted pauses whenever he wanted but it felt like 5 minute sentences. These odd pauses made it is really hard to concentrate and I kept losing the train of thought. The narrator would also insert long awkward pauses before almost all German words (and there are quite a few of those). I wanted to like this, I really tried to listen to it, but overall it was just hard to follow the narrative.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Arius
  • Annandale, VA United States
  • 12-02-16

Modestly Good

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

I would say that I don't regret having listened to this book. There was enough detail and theories regarding how events unfolded that aren't found elsewhere to make this worth the time to consider its perspectives.

What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

The ending is highly speculative with little more than rumor to back it up, and the real failure is that the book doesn't make clear that it is speculating, but presents it as known fact.

What aspect of Eric Brooks’s performance would you have changed?

Given the material, I don't think I would have changed much beyond learning the proper pronunciations of names and places.

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

Probably. I like movies based on history even when they radically depart from it. This book isn't a radical departure. So the movie would be tempting.

Any additional comments?

It's a little breathless and certain of things that are well-known to be uncertainties. It also sometimes falls into editorializing which is a mistake for this kind of history, which speaks for itself.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Heather B
  • New Mexico, United States
  • 06-22-16

Dated, but still worth consideration

Also, written for a French audience, and there is an obvious focus on France, at the expense of the other regions in which the Gestapo operated.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great History Book Terrible Narrator

Slightly out of date but it was well paced and I never felt confused as to where in history we were or whom we were delving into. Even if learned a little something here and honestly all I was thinking throughout the book is "I can't wait to read it again"!

Okay so I also read that the narrator was terrible and I usually never care nor believe when people say that a narrator is that bad... I believe now! At first I didn't even notice and thought he did a good job but I realized that I still had the narration speed set to 1.50 and I thought "huh? if he sounds like he is reading normally at this speed I wonder what it sounds like at the speed it's intended to?" Holy crap it was soooooooooo slow with unnecessary pauses everywhere. I would loss focus and just get impatient so I went up in speed again. That totally made it sooooo much better and I recommend it honestly.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Michael
  • Nashua, NH, United States
  • 02-14-16

Great listen

It's so very funny but when I first bought this book all I heard from many reviewers was how great the book is, but how poorly the reader performed. I didn't find that to be the case at all. I thought the entire production was great, including the reader. I'm thinking that the folks who trashed the reader ought to untwist their panties, listen to the book again, and enjoy it this time. It really is a good listen.
Mike

1 of 1 people found this review helpful