(maybe three and a half, but more four than three)
What I like about this book:
1. The prologue is absolutely fantastic. The author tells you all the little details you want to know, and at the same time Anna Funder gets right to it. Ruth and Hans are introduced, the storyline is laid out, and it sets you in a mood.
2. While reading you get the story from two perspectives and I really like this, though it at times is a bit confusing and dragging. Getting two perspectives is especially important for the character Dora. As a reader you need the two sides of her. The author could of course have made Ruth tell everything, but I do think that Toller was the only one who could get the story about her right.
3. The most important thing about this book is that it showed how impossible it was for anyone to do anything about the situation they saw coming in Germany. Dora, Toller, Ruth, they all tried, but no one would open their eyes and see what was actually going on.
4. I grew to love the characters and I could feel their pain. I felt the hopelessness and the sadness. All in all this book made me feel and it made me think. Should Ruth, and myself, have seen it coming with Hans? Could Ruth have saved anyone?
Some things I did not like quite as much:
1. It was a bit confusing and difficult for me to read this book at times because I don't know very much about Germany in the years before WWII. There were of course some facts about it, but there could have been a little bit more. At the same time I feel like I can't really blame the author for this. She wrote a book and should be allowed to demand something from her readers.
2. The book was a little bit slow in the beginning. This might be because I only read a few pages at a time (I had to get of trains and get to classes ; ) ), but I was a little bit disappointed after the marvellous prologue.
3. The way Hans was written annoyed me a bit. He changes, as the readers know, as the story goes on. I know that he was a real person and that it actually happened, but I do feel like it should have been written another way. I believe Hans was quite a loving person, the way he was portrayed in the beginning of this book anyway, and I do understand that something probably snapped inside of him at one point, which made him change quite a bit. What I did not like was that we suddenly learnt about all the bad things he had ever done. It might just be my reaction to it all though, I liked Hans and maybe I, as a reader, wasn't ready for him to be doing all this...