Anonymous soldiers: When 'terrorists' won the war

May 8, 2015

If someone told you that Osama bin Laden masterminded 9/11 after reading a seminal text about militant Zionism - written by a former Israeli Prime Minister - would you believe them? The story may sound far-fetched, but it's true.


Why I had to expose the 'secret' of Hitler

By Emma Craigie, May 8, 2015

When the Russian tanks entered the centre of Berlin on April 29 1945, a 26-year-old Jewish woman was travelling in a jeep ahead of the troops. Elena Rzhevskaya was a military interpreter for Russia's 3rd Shock Army. She worked for SMERSH, the Soviet counter-intelligence agency, whose name is an acronym of the Russian for "death to spies".


The Heights of fame for a long forgotten man

By David Herman, April 30, 2015

Everywhere you go these days, you can see copies of Kolymsky Heights, a thriller written more than 20 years ago. It's all very strange. When the author, Lionel Davidson, died in 2009 he had published one novel in 30 years. The month before he died, the Independent ran an item headed, Forgotten authors no. 37: Lionel Davidson.


Review: Gone to Ground

By Natasha Lehrer, April 23, 2015

By Marie Jalowitz Simon (Trans: Anthea Bell)
Profile, £14.99 (ebook £8.99)

Towards the very end of her life, in 1997, Marie Jalowicz Simon, a highly respected East German philosopher and philologist, began to talk for the first time about her life as a young Jewish woman who managed to survive the war by going underground in Nazi Berlin.


Review: A Fifty-Year Silence

By Jennifer Lipman, April 23, 2015

By Miranda Richmond Mouillot
Text Publishing, £12.99

As a 15-year-old, Miranda Richmond Mouillot was taken by her contrary, eccentric grandfather to visit a dilapidated property in rural France.


Narrative checkmate

By Sipora Levy, April 23, 2015

The Death's Head Chess Club (Atlantic, £12.99) is an intriguing novel by John Donoghue about an unlikely friendship that develops between three men.


True legacy of Günter Grass

By Bernard Wasserstein, April 17, 2015

In a riveting scene in his novel The Tin Drum, Günter Grass depicts the infamous Reichskristallnacht pogrom of November 1938 as it was witnessed in Danzig by the central character, Oskar Matzerath, a hunchbacked, teenage dwarf. This is no conventional, realist narrative. Writing retrospectively in a post-war lunatic asylum, Oskar recalls the horror from a strange, oblique angle.


Review: A Reunion of Ghosts

By Hephzibah Anderson, April 17, 2015

By Judith Claire Mitchell
4th Estate, £14.99

Judith Claire Mitchell's second novel takes the form of a 370-page suicide note. Make that a triple suicide note. It's also one of the sharpest, tartest, flat-out funniest books you're likely to read any time soon.


Review: These are the Names

By David Herman, April 17, 2015

By Tommy WieringaScribe, £14.99

This is an astonishing book. Original, dark and quite unlike anything else I have read. And yet it speaks to the mood of our times. It is a novel about violence and barbarism, the fragility of civilisation and a world of people on the move, migrants desperate for a better life.


Review: A Possibility of Violence

By Alan Montague, April 17, 2015

D A Mishani laments the fact that there is no famous Israeli detective - no Kurt Wallander or Sara Lund.