Ruins of Castle Hanstein near Bornhagen, Germany

Visiting the ruins of Hanstein takes us back to medieval times - Castle Hanstein near Bornhagen, Germany in 2012 More »

Vietnam War protestors demonstrate - Wichita, KS, 1967.

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Solingen, Germany after the bombing, November 1944. - Stadtarchiv Solingen

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My grandmother Grete with her sisters in the early 1920s in Germany.

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B17 Bomber above German Airfield in WWII

U.S. Bomber flies above German airfield in WWII. More »



my dog is no model

My old mutt, Mocha and I say “hello.”

Hi, thanks for stopping by. Here is my pooch, Mocha, trying her best to pose for the camera. It’s a tough thing to sit still when you’re a dog. We picked her up at the Humane Society in 2004. (She really picked us.) I hope you can stay a moment. Below you’ll find information about new releases (two in March 2017), some editorial feedback for my novels and upcoming events. Also check out the rest of my site like my published books, what I’m writing now, or take a look at my blog. If you have comments or questions, please contact me. I love hearing from readers and fans and answer every e-mail.

New Release: Surviving the Fatherland

cover for surviving the fatherland with BGS gold seal of approval

Now available as an audiobook on Amazon, Audible and iTunes!

***Winner of the 2017 ‘National Indie Excellence Award’***

***An IWIC Hall of Fame Novel***

***#1 Amazon Bestseller German Historical Fiction***

***17,000+ copies sold since March 15***

“This book needs to join the ranks of the classic survivor stories of WWII such as “Diary of Anne Frank” and “Man’s Search for Meaning”. It is truly that amazing!” InD’tale Magazine

Released on March 15, ‘Surviving the Fatherland’ is my most ambitious work to date: a historical saga/coming-of-age novel set against the backdrop of WWII Germany. This novel focuses on what war children born into the Third Reich experienced and how this experience colored their lives and relationships. I’ve worked on this novel for 15 years, taken it through more revisions than I can count. At last I feel it is ready to be seen and help illuminate an aspect of WWII we rarely talk about: the children’s war. SURVIVING THE FATHERLAND is a true story, based on my parents who grew up in Solingen, Germany. In 2002, I recorded their memories, unaware that my mother would pass away within two years. How I wish I could share this work with her. Read more about my family’s story on my blog.

cover image for novelette 47 DaysNew Release: 47 DAYS

Fresh off the press comes to you the true story of my father’s WW2 adventure, 47 DAYS: The True Story of Two Teen Boys Defying Hitler’s Reich. 47 DAYS is a 13,000-word novelette, an excerpt from the full-length novel, SURVIVING THE FATHERLAND. Please read more about the background of this story on my blog A True WWII Adventure. This is a relatively short story, but I felt it to be especially important in today’s climate. Now more than ever are we responsible to think for ourselves, to question and to voice our opinion. We must not become lemmings jumping blindly over a cliff. book cover Escape from the Past written by Annette Oppenlander

Midwest Book Review

“…a science fiction time travel action/adventure novel that will grip the reader’s total attention from beginning to end. Very highly recommended for school and community library YA fiction collections.” 

Historical Novel Society

Geared to a young adult audience, Escape from the Past is an entertaining and fast-paced read that guarantees to thrill any young reader’s/gamer’s wish to be a hero in a faraway time. Read full review

Escape from the Past for sale from authorHistorical Novel Society

It’s a hardscrabble life, and ultimately Max winds up getting involved in a quest for gold and to rescue a family member of an American Indian. It’s ironic, but at first Max just gets everything wrong in his interactions. Ultimately he reveals his advanced knowledge and formidable courage against a deadly enemy, making this a gripping YA historical novel. There’s something about the essence of Western drama that makes exciting, wonderful reading. Max is fortunate enough to participate in the gritty, courageous kind of living that was once a day-to-day challenge. This is a great historical fantasy read that will make you want to read the first book in this series! Read full review book cover a different truth by annette oppenlander

Readers’ Favorite – Five Stars

A Different Truth is a powerful and thought provoking tale that allows us to think about our moral decisions. Readers who are personally familiar with the history of the Vietnam War will be fascinated by the story of the boys at Palmer Military Academy, whereas the generation that was born after the war would be able to use it as a trajectory to discover more about this unseen but crucial part of history. Full review at Readers’ Favorite

News & Events

Spring Semester 2017, Ivy Tech Community College, Bloomington, Ind.

March 1, 2017, New Release, 47 DAYS: The True Story of Two Teen Boys Defying Hitler’s Reich

March 15, 2017, New Release, SURVIVING THE FATHERLAND: A True Coming-of-age Love Story Set in WWII Germany

March 20, 2017, Indiana Daily Student (IDS) interview

March 26, 2017, FREE fiction workshop on “Developing Great Characters,” Monroe County Public Library

March 30, 2017, WFHB interview, Bloomington, Ind.

April 21-22, 2017, Southern Kentucky Author Fair (SOKY) and YA Panel Discussion, Bowling Green, KY

April 26-May 17, 2017, SURVIVING THE FATHERLAND Review Blog Tour

May 11, 2017, 6 – 9 pm, Reading and Music, Players Pub, Bloomington, Ind.

May 13, 2017, 10 am-3 pm, Authorama – Arts and Author Fair, Tipton, Ind.

May 20, 2017, Barnes & Noble, Summer Kickoff Celebration, Indianapolis, Ind.

May 25, 2017, Bell Trace, ‘Trip into the Past’ Presentation, Bloomington, Ind.

June 3, 2017, Inside Out Yoga/Journaling Retreat, Ekah Yoga Studio, Bloomington, Ind.

June 9, 2017, The Best and Worst about the Middle Ages, Rotary Club, Everett, WA

June 22-24, 2017, Presenter “Going medieval: How to infuse the Middle Ages into your Writing,” Historical Novel Society Annual Conference, Portland, OR

July 15, 2017, Barnes and Noble, presentation and signing ‘Surviving the Fatherland,’ Noblesville, Ind.

July 16, 2017, Monroe County Public Library, FREE workshop on Publishing in the 21st Century, Bloomington, Ind.

August 6, 2017, 3 pm, Reading from my new novel, SURVIVING THE FATHERLAND, Boxcar Books, Bloomington, Ind.

August 9, 2017, 7 pm, Indiana Historical Society, Indianapolis, Ind.