Metropolis✬ [PDF] ✓ Metropolis By Philip Kerr ✹ – Berlin 1928 the dying days of the Weimar Republic shortly before Hitler and the Nazis came to power It was a period of decadence and excess as Berliners after the terrible slaughter of WWI and the har Berlin the dying days of the Weimar Republic shortly before Hitler and the Nazis came to power It was a period of decadence and excess as Berliners after the terrible slaughter of WWI and the hardships that followed are enjoying their own version of Babylon Bernie is a young detective working in Vice when he gets a summons from Bernard Weiss Chief of Berlin's Criminal Police He invites Bernie to join KIA Criminal Inspection A the supervisory body for all homicide investigation in Kripo Bernie's first task is to investigate the Silesian Station killings four prostitutes murdered in as many weeks All of them have been hit over the head with a hammer and then scalped with a sharp knifeBernie hardly has time to acuaint himself with the case files before another prostitute is murdered Until now no one has shown much interest in these victims there are plenty in Berlin who'd like the streets washed clean of such degenerates But this time the girl's father runs Berlin's foremost criminal ring and he's prepared to go to extreme lengths to find his daughter's killerThen a second series of murders begins of crippled wartime veterans who beg in the city's streets It seems that someone is determined to clean up Berlin of anyone less than perfect The voice of Nazism is becoming a roar that threatens to drown out all others But not Bernie Gunther's. This is Philip Kerr's swansong after his untimely and much lamented death last year and he leaves us with a gloriously detailed portrayal of the dying days of the Weimar Republic the chilling rise of Nazism and Hitler in the city of Berlin He returns us to Bernie Gunther's early days as a detective working in vice but now promoted to the Murder Commission by the Chief of the Criminal Police the lawyer and Jew Bernard Weiss For some time Jews have been fair game and every Jew in public life carries a gun the best kind of life insurance they can buy The legacy of WW1 is writ large in Germany with crushing poverty and starvation sualor rising inflation women forced to work as prostitutes to survive and the presence on the streets of mentally and physically afflicted crippled war veterans begging and a troubled political establishment hanging on by its fingernails Side by side in the Berlin metropolis is its reputation as another Babylon drowning in decadence with its growing sex tourism overt signs of debauchery in the bars and clubs ueers and transgenders shamelessly flaunting themselves a city of messed up morality At the heart of it is the arts and culture of 1928 including people such as Fritz Lang with his film Metropolis and 'degenerate' artists like George GroszInto this febrile atmosphere a serial killer has been targeting prostitutes hitting them over the head with a hammer and scalping them This has not caused many ripples in the city where the underlying feeling is that the killer is only doing what is necessary clearing the filth off the streets But the fourth victim Eva Angerstein has a father in a powerful position in Berlin's criminal rings fraternity and he will do anything to get hold of his daughter's murderer including helping Bernie in his investigations With the reputation of the police in tatters with the killer still at large and many in Berlin gunning for Weiss another serial killer emerges wanting to rid Berlin of the constant reminders of Germany's past failures and shame by exterminating the crippled war veterans malingerers who are essentially vermin The latest killer is not alone in his inability to abide anything less than 'perfection' there are doctors ostensibly looking after veterans openly espousing eugenics In a investigation where it is difficult to be a honest cop the flawed Bernie walks the tightrope determined to find a killer not always making the wisest decisions seeking justice for the victims but in the end forced to be pragmatic given the political volatility that defines the eraPhilip Kerr is a brilliant storyteller he evokes the turbulent atmosphere of 1928 Berlin in a historical novel that features real life characters of the time and captures a Berlin and Germany that is inexorably heading towards the horrors of Nazi rule and WW2 His final Bernie Gunther novel is superb and an absolute joy to read and I still haven't come to terms that there will be no I am going to have to go back and reread at some point in the future The worst aspects of reading about this time in history with its rising populism is that our contemporary world is being marked by its own nightmare rise in populism and the inevitable darkness that follows in its wake Love love love this novel and this series Highly recommended Many thanks to uercus for an ARC Berlin in 1928 is between two epochs the Weimer Republic is at its dusk and the Third Reich is just about to arrive Berlin is still the city of decadence cabarets WW1 veterans however new ideas are on the horizon Bernie Gunther is a only a young detective tasked with finding the culprit behind brutal murders of four young women He already has the perfect sense of investigating the crime that he will only master in his future cases Philip Kerr's portrayal of Berlin is just perfectand it matches the way I envision it in the the 1920s Truly loved this last book with Bernie and as I listened to the audiobook I can only add that John Lee's interpretation is a masterpiece The book is entitled Metropolis not just because of the appearance of Fritz Lang but because the main character might be better described as Berlin than even Bernie Gunther Here Kerr gives us a taste of early Gunther right when he was promoted to the homicide bureau putting his detective mind to work solving a case of a serial murderer roaming the streets of Berlin But best of all Kerr places Gunther in a time of Weimar Germany with the whole country still suffering from its bitter defeat in World War One There's a darkness festering in the air And some areas are filled with the raunchiest of nightclubs and cabarets and sex clubs a real Sodom and Gommorah Legless veterans who survived the trenches are begging in the railway stations Prostitutes line the alleys and the world is bitter cynical The Nazis are advancing towards 1933 but they're not yet in power as their evil specter still hovers like a dark cloud over the future This book really brings to life a time and place and offers historical perspective It is far than just another detective novel Well that’s it then Read my 14th and last Bernie Gunther detective To my great regret there will never be another Bernie to look forward to But I am happy to report this was a really excellent oneI had the feeling that it had perhaps been Philip Kerr’s intention for a long time to write about the young Bernie Gunther I might be wrong in my intuition about Metropolis but I really thought it breathed the air of the older Bernie Gunther novels than his last novels which were located at the French Riviera and the pre ultimate one in Greece Especialy the pre ultimate one ‘Greeks bearing Gifts’ felt like Philip Kerr was at the end of his tether and his heart was not in it any which is understandable in view of his illness So I personally thought that it was a splendid idea of Philip Kerr to give us at last the young Bernie Gunther without the burden of his future life all those murders intrigues betrayals concentration camps Hitler’s election as Chancellor horrors like Himmler and Heydrich and other top nazi’s and the destruction of Berlin and Germany You could say that Kerr made it easier for his fans to take leave of Bernie At least it had that effect on me Here was the unknown Bernie with a clean slate and an unburdened past But also the Bernie who is well recognizable in his independent reasoning and naturally his cynical wisecracksThe novel is situated in 1928 and starts with Bernie’s first day as a detective in the Berlin Murder Division having spent a few years in the Vice Department which was naturally very educational for him to get a good view of all the lowlifes their connections and the places where they hang out Bernie was really noticed for his talent employing his creative independance and ability to communicate with each and everyone and was therefore asked by the Head of the Murder Division a Jewish intellectual to join his team The Director Mr Bernard Weiss is already starting to get harrassed by the fascists but they do not have any substantial influence yet especially in Berlin In the Author’s Note at the end of the book we learn that Bernard Weiss was a real historical person who fled Germany a few days before Hitler became Chancellor But already in 1928 it is clear that things will be getting progressively nasty especially with those bands of Goebbels followers roaming the streets and taking pleasure in harrassing everyone especially Jewish people Bernie is put on the task of finding the murderer of 4 prostitutes This murderer has the very nasty habit of scalping his victims so he gets the nickname Winnetou after the scalping Indian in the Karl May novels Subseuent to these atrocious murders begging WW I veterans in wheel chairs in the streets are shot in the head with a single shot in the forehead So there you go Bernie is investigating nine murders as his first assignmentIan Rankin wrote a touching and interesting introduction to this last Bernie He praises Philip Kerr for his humour humanity and existential dread in the portrayal of Bernie Gunther and the description of the ever darkening world around him I could not agree This is the fourteenth Bernie Gunther novel and sadly the last to be published after the tragic loss of Phiip Kerr last year I read the first Bernie Gunther novel in 1989 and was delighted when Kerr brought the character back in 2006 after the initial trilogy which was completed in 1991 During the series Kerr wrote about the life of Gunther before during and after WWII The previous book “Greeks Bearing Gifts” was set in the 1950’s and I had half hoped that Philip Kerr would have had the opportunity to complete Gunther’s life story and even possibly give him a happy ending This instalment though is set in 1928 I do love the early years of Gunther’s career as a Berlin detective and as such I am pleased that this series does finish when our anti hero is young and not aware of all the problems awaiting him Perhaps that is how it should beIt is 1928 Weimar Germany and Bernie Gunther has just been moved from vice to homicide There is a killer on the streets who is not only murdering prostitutes but scalping them Also there are a number of disabled war veterans being killed while begging on the streetsNobody recreates this period of history better than Philip Kerr and we have Weimar Germany in all its decadence excess and corruption Many of those living in Gunther’s lodging house help to highlight this as do the many clubs and bars that Gunther visits as he trundles around Berlin at one point in the novel literally Although this series is best known for being set during the second world war it is the first world war which is most evident in this novel The memories loss and humiliation of the war are evident everywhere from memories triggered in various characters to the fact that war veterans highlight the nation’s feeling of failure in many residents of the cityFor me this was a bittersweet read I am delighted that Philip Kerr did bring Gunther back into print after the initial trilogy and so pleased that we have fourteen books to enjoy not to mention Kerr’s many other novels some sadly not in print but saddened to have come to the end of a series which is one of my all time favourites If you have not read Bernie Gunther before you are in for a treat Both Philip Kerr and Bernie Gunther will be much missed by me and I am sure by many other readersBernie Gunther series in order1 March Violets 19892 The Pale Criminal 19903 A German Reuiem 19914 The One from the Other 20065 A uiet Flame 20086 If the Dead Rise Not 20097 Field Grey 20108 Prague Fatale 20119 A Man Without Breath 201310 The Lady from Zagreb 201511 The Other Side of Silence 201612 Prussian Blue 201713 Greeks Bearing Gifts 201814 Metropolis 2019 i rarely give 5 for a book but this one absolutely deserve it one of the best thrillers full with compassion and empathty for humanity clever full with knowledge great sense of humor sometimes cynical but brings great laugh it is sad we will not have of Kerr books I’ve been with Bernie Gunther on this long ride and now it is over Philip Kerr has died and this is the last book that he will ever write about Berlin’s detective Those who have been following Gunther through the Second World War and beyond now have the opportunity to read about how it all began This book deals with Berlin during the post World War I period and how Bernie Gunther becomes an expert in murder and other crimesHere is how one of his mates at his boarding house describes Germany and “the metropolis”“The show is very empty and pretentious it’s true But these days tell me what isn’t? If you ask me the inflation didn’t just affect our money but everything else too Sex drinking drugs nightlife art you name it It’s like everything is rampantly out of control you know? Especially in Berlin The inflated money was just the beginning The city’s become one great big department store of debaucheryThis is early Bernie Gunther Most of the time I’m very proud to be a cop I think there’s nothing wrong with being a cop—unless there’s something wrong with the cop of course But sometimes it took a great deal of courage to see the Berlin police force with all its faults and still love itWe who have been with Kerr and Gunther for the decades after this are examining the beginnings for those characteristics that endure Here Gunther a low level detective comes to the attention of the Murder Commission early in the bookIn our opinion you’ve the makings of a fine detective Gunther You are diligent and you know when to keep your mouth shut; that’s good in a detectiveSo welcome to the Murder Commission Gunther The rest of your life just changed forever You’ll never look at people in the same way again From now on whenever you stand next to a man at a bus stop or on a train you’ll be sizing him up as a potential killer And you’d be right to do so Statistics show that most murders in Berlin are committed by ordinary law abiding citizens In short people like you and meAnd his gracious rival for the position concedes Word is you’ll go far Gunther You’ll be a commissar in no time Me I’ve got a big mouth so it’s probably just as well I didn’t get the seat Truth be told two Jews in the one car is one Jew too many But you know when to keep your lip buttoned lad That’s the secret to advancement around here Knowing when to keep your trap shut And when to forget about politics Besides there are too many damn lawyers in the force alreadyThere are a lot of killings going on A series of killings of paraplegic WW I veterans and another series of killings of prostitutes Are they related? Are we dealing with one killer or many?And the plain fact of the matter is that if we’re going to catch this psychopath it will have to be with the immediate resources of the Murder Commission and a few like minded Kripo officers rather than the whole police department But I fear that if you do conduct any interviews it will have to be a mostly solo effort I’m sorry Bernie but that’s just how it is and how it has to be Understand?”“I hear what you say Ernst But we can’t have it both ways Public apathy or public hysteria—we have to choose the lesser of two evils hereKerr’s attention to details of the period is enlightening His descriptive flair only gets brighter with ageShe was wearing a light tweed two piece suit a man’s shirt and tie white stockings and a pair of silver earrings Her shortish blond hair was parted to one side her mouth was maybe a bit too wide and her nose a bit too long but she was as elegant as Occam’s razor and just as sharp She had come armed with some expensive stationery from Liebmann and a variety of accessories that made me think she might have been to India a gold enameled cigarette case that resembled a Mughal’s favorite rug; a variety of silver and ivory bangles; and a green clutch bag with an embroidered Hindu god that was home to a lorgnette and several large banknotes This was just as well; the Hotel Adlon’s restaurant was the most expensive in Berlin I knew that because I saw the ransom demands that were amusingly called prices on the menuBerlin is very strange and very openfar beyond what is demonstrated in the musical Cabaret“What’s fair got to do with anything? If there was any fairness in this world my little girl would still be alive” He lit a cigarette and smiled a crocodile sort of smile “Fair he says Listen son this country—and this city in particular—are full of shit And the shit keeps on piling up around our ears Communists Nazis Junkers Prussians military men pimps drug addicts perverts You mark my words Gunther one day there’s going to be nowhere clean left for anyone to stand on and we’ll all be in the shitAnd Bernie Gunther whose wife has died is certainly aware of the women that he encounters“You’ve got a way with women Gunther A nice way but a way nonetheless The same way a professional gambler knows the way to count cards Or a good jockey knows how to handle racehorses” “You make me sound very cynical” “No That’s not it I’ll work out a name for it the next time I have a thesaurus in front of me Anyway now that I know you’re all right I was thinking of celebrating by locking the door again” “Just as long as I’m on the inside” “I can’t think of a better place for you to be”we lay on top of the covers for a while exhausted and sheened with sweat listening to the symphonic adagio that was the city’s smallest hours too tired to smoke or to touch each other but knowing without having to say anything that there would be another time for all those mysteriesNeither of us said anything and it seemed to me that for a fleeting instant we reached out into the void and touched a perfect innocenceAt the end of this book but at the beginning of this saga Bernie is the person who struggles with his humanity and his pursuit of justiceYou wouldn’t have stood for it” “You were right about that much anyway” “I didn’t have time to figure all the angles but it seemed like a good idea I still think you should let things lie the way they are” “I can’t It’s just not in me I’ve got standards and I try to live up to them Whereas you’ve got no standards at all and you certainly live up to those I should have realized that45You’re a stubborn bastard if ever I met one I almost admire you for it It seems it’s true what they say There’s no fool uite as foolish as an honest fool But ask yourself this One day one day soon if I’m not mistaken when you’re the only honest man left in Germany who’ll know?” So the inevitable last book of the Bernie Gunther books has arrived Philip Kerr died last year in March just days before the release of the previous Bernie Gunther novel I expected that to be last one and bless his heart he had another one for us in stock I love the little introduction that Ian Rankin provided for this book and love the gentleness he lays in there when he speaks about his friend and fellow writer he shall be missed I expect this book to be a bittersweet experience it being the last book of a really brilliant series written by a man who has passed away and shall never be able to hear the praise it undoubtedly will receiveThis final installment of the Bernie Gunther books is in essence a preuel a return to the beginnings of Bernie Gunther as a policeman for the Berlin Mordkommision In the opening we see him being asked to join the Murder suad by his new boss Bernard Weiss The fun bit about the books of Kerr are how he drops in real people to give his stories ore a reality based feeling For me this book was set out in a very recognizable Berlin I have recently seen Berlin Babylon which is set in the same era of German history and Berlin It makes me wonder if Philip Kerr has seen the same show which might have prompted him to return to the Berlin pre Nazi yearsBernie shows very uickly he has what it takes to solve a murder which pleases his new boss very much When confronted with the next murder he is thrown into a case involving a serial killer who targets prostitutes kills them with a hammer blow in the neck and then scalps them thus earning him the moniker Winnetou based on the famous character as created by the eually famous Karl May who wrote this series of books about the nobel Indian chieftain Winnetou In his investigations Bernie comes across a criminal whose daughter was the last victim and he is very interested in finding out about the culpritEnter a second serial killer who kills the handicapped veterans of WWI because as he taunts the police they are a blight on the beautiful city of Berlin This high profile case takes the public interest away from some dead prostitutes and so Bernie gets cast into another murdercase In this one he actually goes undercover and sees his own city from a different viewpointOnce again we see history through Bernie Gunthers eyes where Philip Kerr does not mind being a wee bit naughty like Gunthers encounter with Thea von Harbou the wife and scriptwriter of Fritz Lang a famous German movie director in which he essentially give her the idea for the movie 'M Eine Stadt sucht einen Mörder about a killer in Berlin well worth your time watching even if it is perhaps uncomfortable This famous director is also the creator of a famous movie called Metropolis it is a silent movie but with the recent find in Argentina of lost footage the movie has become grand and is well worth your viewing pleasureKerr describes a Berlin in the Interbellum The period between the two great Wars where live is difficult and hard for the common folks where anything goes and as the upcoming Nazis felt was a Sodom and Gomorrah Through the eyes of Bernie Gunther we see this city post WWI and the threat of the incoming disaster already showing Once again a tour de force by Philip Kerr and sadly his last one this book is a worthy closing chapter even if the writer had perhaps some ideas for future installments We shall never know but he left a series that is well worth your time and attentionHis first three Berlin Noir books were a great trilogy but in my humble opinion the next eleven books that started to appear close to 15 years later show a different view upon World War 2 and its conseuences after the war I find these eleven books very interesting and insightful as they show a picture we generally are not told about as we like to keep such a romantic and adventure view of World War 2 which turns out to be such a pallet of Grey variations We get to see them through the eyes of Bernie Gunther German no Nazi survivor and policemanDo yourself a favor and read the last eleven books to learn about Europe and our last great war and enjoy the company of Bernie Gunther I prefer the latter books to the original trilogy of Berlin NoirI will undoubtedly revisit this series in the future as there will be no new books Set in 1928 during the Weimar Republic this features a younger innocent less cynical Bernie Gunther who has just joined the murder suad in Berlin and is on the trail of not one but two serial killers one targeting prostitutes the other 'cleaning' the streets of beggingwounded war veteransFor me this has the strengths and weaknesses of the other books in this series for one the story is overlong bloated with filler Kerr is never one to leave any research unused so there are endless descriptions of the precise route that Bernie takes every time he leaves the housepolice building; he can't pick up a reichsmark note without lecturing us on the man whose portrait is on the note even though he's never heard of him and it's irrelevant anywayIt's also notable that many men including Bernie seem to suddenly be feminists I wonder if this is Kerr's response to how some readers took Bernie's rampant sexism in the previous books? It might have been distasteful but was probably historically realistic Now we have Bernie's boss 'in his plummy almost thespian voice' saying I keep telling our leaders that if we did to support eual pay for women we could solve the problem of prostitution overnight Another male character Mussolini has ended women's rights in Italy on the same day my own country has lowered the age of women voting HaFor all that these books are excellent on recreating atmosphere here the decadent febrile atmosphere of Berlin when the wounds and humiliations of WW1 are still current and the country is heading towards a Nazi power grab Anti semitism is rife women with jobs are forced to turn to prostitution to supplement their income inflation is on the rise there is corruption in public life and crime gangs and drug dealers rule the streets Bernie and his band of or less honourable cops are the decent guys Bernie wisecracking his way through the murk 35 stars for me an engrossing commuteoff duty read My first Bernie Gunther is also the last written by Philip Kerr who died shortly after completing the bookThe story was enjoyable and had some great descriptions of Weimar Germany along with characters who were alive in those days playing larger or walk on parts in this MetropolisBernie himself is a Great War veteran and is affected and influenced by his experiences throughout his adventure He has just been recruited from vice to the murder department and is immediately immersed into murders that are worrying his boss and some parts of Berlin society Our Man needs to help his experiences colleagues connect the pieces and stop the killer or killersAt the end of the book are some author notes in real life people who feature in the storyA good read and one that will set me off reading the others This book needed no prior knowledge of Bernie or his other adventures

Metropolis PDF/EPUB ¿ Paperback
  • Paperback
  • 400 pages
  • Metropolis
  • Philip Kerr
  • 06 February 2015
  • 9781787473225