If The Dead Rise Not: A Bernie Gunther Novel by Philip KerrIf The Dead Rise Not: A Bernie Gunther Novel by Philip Kerr

If The Dead Rise Not: A Bernie Gunther Novel

byPhilip Kerr

Paperback | April 5, 2011

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Detective Bernie Gunther navigates two corrupt regimes in this “richly satisfying mystery...that evokes the noir sensibilities of Raymond Chandler and Ross Macdonald while breaking new ground of its own”(Los Angeles Times).

Berlin, 1934. Former policeman Bernie Gunther, now a hotel detective, finds himself caught between warring factions of the Nazi apparatus as Hitler and Avery Brundage, the head of the U.S. Olympic Committee, connive to soft-pedal Nazi anti-Semitism before the 1936 Olympiad...
Havana, 1954. Batista, aided by the CIA, has just seized power; Castro is in prison; and the American Mafia is gaining a stranglehold on Cuba’s exploding gaming and prostitution industries. Bernie, after being kicked out of Buenos Aires, has resurfaced with a relatively peaceful new life. But he discovers that he cannot truly outrun his past when he collides with an old love and a vicious killer from his Berlin days...
Philip Kerr is the New York Times bestselling author of the acclaimed Bernie Gunther novels, two of which—Field Gray and The Lady from Zagreb—were finalists for the Edgar® Award for Best Novel. Kerr has also won several Shamus Awards and the British Crime Writers’ Association Ellis Peters Award for Historical Crime Fiction. As P. B. Ke...
Title:If The Dead Rise Not: A Bernie Gunther NovelFormat:PaperbackDimensions:464 pages, 7.7 × 5.1 × 0.97 inPublished:April 5, 2011Publisher:Penguin Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0143118536

ISBN - 13:9780143118534


Rated 3 out of 5 by from There are better Philip Kerr books out there It almost hurts to give a Philip Kerr novel three out of five stars, but given how much I have liked the other novels in the Bernie Gunther series, it was harder still to give this book a higher rating. And it all boiled down to two major issues I had with this novel. The book was divided into two parts. The first part takes place in 1934 in Berlin and finds Gunther dealing with American gangsters, a beautiful journalist, corrupt Nazis, oppressed Jews and washed up boxers. The story rattles along at a great pace, but then ends in a strangely unique, but almost unbelievable way, before making way to the second part of the book which takes place in 1954 in Cuba. My problem was with the fact that the two stories really have nothing to do with each other except that a few of the survivors from part one limp into part two in what amounts to an almost unbelievable coincidence. I enjoyed both stories, especially the first part which was a bit more visceral, but didn't like how Kerr tried to make one relevant to the other. It was like he had two separate Bernie Gunther stories in mind, then, due to his publisher putting pressure on him, or the need to spew forth something before the Christmas holidays, he mixed and matched the storylines into one, less credible piece. Problem number two is with the overall ending. Usually, Kerr has a neatly packaged little twist that comes as a complete surprise to the reader, but this book ends with little more than a sad attempt at not one, but two, plot twisters; neither of which are all that surprising or unexpected. For all my complaining, I still love Bernie Gunther / Philip Kerr and this novel had some great scenes and characters surrounding the protagonist. I especially love how drab and grey Kerr portrays Nazi Germany, and can find little fault with the writer's ability to transport the reader to that very difficult time. I can only hope he can transport us back to when the next Bernie Gunther novel was as exciting as the last.
Date published: 2011-11-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very Captivating Book 6, in the Bernie Gunther series The readers are carried deeper into Bernie’s saga in this terrific story that flips from 1934 Berlin into the rapidly changing world of 1954 Havana. The blend of madness and murder mixed with the Nazi and the Batista era creates an action packed backdrop for an exciting read and Mr. Kerr knows how to spice it up and to deliver it well. 1934, Germany is preparing to host the 1936 Olympic Games. The action begins when Bernie, the house detective of the Hotel Adlon discovers the body of a German businessman with strong construction industry ties dead in his room. With a body and a multitude of clues, Bernie’s investigation propels him into a world of international corruption and dangerous double dealings involving American gangsters, corrupt Nazis and an insight into Hitler’s plan for the 1936 Olympics. Meanwhile, Noreen Chalambides, an American journalist is also a patron of the hotel, she is on assignment to expose the Nazi regime and convince the American powers that be they should boycott the Olympics….Bernie soon finds himself infatuated by her charming personality. Two thirds into the novel, the action switches to post war- Cuba 1954 After being expelled from Argentina (the previous novel “A Quiet Flame”) Bernie relocates to Havana with the hope of living a less stressful life under an assumed name. That soon changes when he runs into his old flame, the journalist Noreen, and is invited to her home for a dinner party. Bernie sees this as a chance to rekindle a previous relationship but he quickly learns Noreen has another agenda. Unable to escape his past and head first into the presence, he learns he is still the target of a vicious killer and due to his recent acquaintances he finds himself caught up in the smoldering rebellious movement which is being magnified by Fidel Castro incarceration. Mr. Kerr’s stories are told entirely in dialogue, there is a lot of chatter going on mostly handled by Bernie, I love this, it makes you part of the story. I really enjoy Bernie, he is funny even when dealing with serious issues, he is not portrayed as the customary super hero as found in most novels of this genre. The plot is dynamic and captivating with many twists and turns and tense situations, an attention grabber to the last page. Although, highly entertaining the story is a tad predictable and less realistic than the previous novels, nevertheless following Bernie on his escapades is always a blast, and a journey into historical fiction. I am looking forward to Bernie’s next exploits.
Date published: 2011-06-01

Editorial Reviews

Praise for Philip Kerr and the Bernie Gunther Novels “A brilliantly innovative thriller writer.”—Salman Rushdie   “Philip Kerr is the only bona fide heir to Raymond Chandler.”—Salon.com   “In terms of narrative, plot, pace and characterization, Kerr’s in a league with John le Carré.”—The Washington Post   “Every time we’re afraid we’ve seen the last of Bernie Gunther, Philip Kerr comes through with another unnerving adventure for his morally conflicted hero.”—Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review   “Just as youth is wasted on the young, history is wasted on historians. It ought to be the exclusive property of novelists—but only if they are as clever and knowledgeable as Philip Kerr.”—Chicago Tribune   “Kerr quantum leaps the limitations of genre fiction. Most thrillers insult your intelligence; his assault your ignorance.”—Esquire “A richly satisfying mystery, one that evokes the noir sensibilities of Raymond Chandler and Ross Macdonald while breaking important new ground of its own.”—Los Angeles Times   “Part of the allure of these novels is that Bernie is such an interesting creation, a Chandleresque knight errant caught in insane historical surroundings. Bernie walks down streets so mean that nobody can stay alive and remain truly clean.”—John Powers, Fresh Air (NPR)   “The Bernie Gunther novels are first-class, as stylish as Chandler and as emotionally resonant as the best of Ross Macdonald.”—George Pelecanos   “Kerr’s stylish noir writing makes every page a joy to read.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)