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“A compelling and disturbing novel, set against the background of the rise of the Nazis. Its protagonist, and by implication the German people of the time, possesses an astonishing combination of deep feeling for music, along with an appalling amorality of personal behavior. Striking psychological insights.”
— Seymour Lipkin, concert pianist

“A truly funny book about a terrible subject, the artist’s betrayal of his humanity. It taps into a long literary tradition, including commedia dell’arte, the picaresque, and Voltaire’s Candide—even as the monstrous evil of Hitler dominates the background. Not just a good read, but a must read.”
— Henry R. Huttenbach, professor of modern European history, City University of New York; founding editor of Genocide Research

“An elegant but searing tale of one man’s rise both to extolled genius and moral corruption. With a backdrop of social collapse and the chaos of war, this book is a gripping read.”
— Norman Gelb, World War II historian, author of The Berlin Wall

“Entertaining though troubling, this book gets at the heart of German society during the Nazis. I know of no other novel that exposes the fatal flaws of German Kultur so compellingly. Its understanding of Nazi music, politics, and sentiment is uncommon. Love, art, music, the Gestapo, and mass murder—all made accessible through an unlikely main character—a masterful musician whose hubris and self-absorption might characterize many in that nation.”
— Eric A. Johnson, director of graduate studies in history, Central Michigan University; author, Nazi Terror; co-author, What We Knew: Everyday Life in Nazi Germany

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