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 »

 

Category Archives: Solingen

A Happy New Year to All

I look back on 2018 with utmost gratitude. A year ago, my husband and father suffered strokes within the span of three weeks. I spent months worrying about their recovery, watched tentative steps grow into wobbly walks. Neither man is fully recovered, yet they’re moving, talking and exercising.

My father just turned 90 and is still able to live in his childhood home. And I’ve enjoyed spending time and taking care of him because for thirty years I lived 5,000 miles away and only saw him for a few days each year.

Cover image of splendor in the heart historical romance by annette oppenlanderIn June I was able to finish the German translation of SURVIVING THE FATHERLAND and I recently completed my seventh novel, A SPLENDOR IN THE HEART, a prohibition era historical romance (light on romance). After my editor gets done with it, the book is scheduled to release in March 2019.

I’m thankful for all my readers, many thousands who read my books, who have written amazing reviews and supported me. You make it possible for me to do what I love most. Thank you!

Looking ahead to 2019

books about german POWs in WWIIMy next project is the true story of my grandfather Willi (Wilhelm) who was taken prisoner by the Russians in May 1945 and spent the next eight plus years in gulags in Siberia and the Ural. To do a thorough job I’ve got to research life in a prison camp.

photo of middle-aged man with glassesIn the 1960s the German government commissioned a study about prisoners of war (POW). They looked at soldiers who’d spent time in French, British, U.S. and Russian camps. They analyzed food, social structure and behavioral changes in captivity. They researched how hunger affected men. Findings were collected in ten volumes of which I own several. Now it’s time to get busy and try to grasp what it was like to live or more accurately subsist in a Russian gulag.

I wish you and yours a happy, healthy and successful New Year!

It’s time to get busy.

New Reviews of ‘Surviving the Fatherland’ from NetGalley

Surviving the Fatherland with IndieBRAG medallionLast month I offered NetGalley readers a chance to review my bestselling and award winning WWII novel, Surviving the Fatherland. Here are snippets of their reviews, which I have to admit, are great fun to read.

  • “Definitely 5 stars. I can see why this book is so loved. Very engrossing, deeply moving and character you will not forget. Everyone that loves a well researched historical will want this one.”
  • “Recommend to teens and adults. Highly readable.”
  • “I highly recommend it to anyone that likes coming of age stories or is fascinated with WWII as I am. This book should become a classic story of the German people during and after World War II because of the knowledge it imparts to each reader.”
  • “…this novel completely exceeded my expectations. It was heartbreaking, brutal, and beautiful. The fact that this is a true story, makes all of these characteristics stronger. I cannot encourage you enough to check it out!”
  • “This is a fascinating and in places a heartbreaking read. It is an honest, true, look at how two peoples lives were affected by World War 2.”
  • “…truly unlike any of this genre I have read and that’s a lot! A very remarkable book that everyone should read.”

German Translation of Surviving the Fatherland

I’m super excited to share that the German translation of Surviving the Fatherland, currently called Vaterland, wo bist du? will be represented by my literary agent, Dr. Dorothee Schmidt. This month she’s going to take the novel to the Frankfurt Book Fair. Please keep your fingers crossed!