Saturday, July 7, 2012

Those Nazis.....

I was intrigued from the get-go about an art curator/ scholar working for the Third Reich so I was more than willing to pick up The Detour by Andromeda Romano-Lax. Ernst, a young man in his twenties, has been given an important assignment in Italy. He is sent to bring back "The Discuss Thrower" an important statue that the Fuhrer wants to own because of it's beautiful homage to physical perfection. A seemingly simple task turns out to be nearly impossible as the two Italians who have been assigned to help him with transport keep making side trips and it is soon clear that people are after the statue. It would fetch a high price on the black market and Italians are already angry at their government for selling such a priceless work of art to Germany.

The plot is richly crafted and you begin to sympathize with poor Ernst on if he will ever get his assignment complete. He may not want to be there in the first place but he wants to see the job through. Plus he is very intrigued by the perfection that the statue represents being very self-conscious about a small physical imperfection of his own. The journey through the Italian countryside forces Ernst to think through some things that have been hidden in the darkest corners of his mind and compels him to come to terms with himself.

The characters are beautifully captured and the plot leaves you wanting more. An excellent read that combines historical fact with the beautiful imagination of Andromeda Romano-Lax.

I received this book for free from Goodreads Giveaways in return for my honest, unbiased opinion.

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