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Steve Anderson is the author of the Kaspar Brothers series (The Losing Role, Liberated, Lost Kin), Under False Flags: A Novel, and other works centered on WWII and its aftermath. In The Other Oregon: A Thriller, he writes about his home state. Anderson was a Fulbright Fellow in Germany and is also a literary translator of German. He lives in Portland, Oregon.
Alcuin Communications, LLC
on Feb. 03, 2011 :
I tried The Losing Role without knowing anything about it or its author. I was looking for a historical novel, and the premise sounded interesting. After reading the sample, I was hooked. I found that I really cared what happened to Max, the main character.
Max is German, spent some time in the U.S., returned to Germany just before WWII. He's an actor, not terribly political. He just wants to act. When the war starts, his roles dry up. He's drafted and sent to the Russian front. His only way out of miserable (and futile) duty in the infantry is a dangerous mission that involves disguising himself as an American soldier and sneaking behind enemy lines to do intelligence work. He decides to use the opportunity to try try to find his way back to the U.S. Max is a likable "every man." He uses the one skill he's confident of, his acting ability, to try to regain control of a life that's gone way out of control.
Is "The Losing Role" great literature? No. Is it solid storytelling and a really good read? It definitely is.
Susan Lynn Peterson
author of "Clare: A Novel"
(reviewed 22 days after purchase)
on Nov. 01, 2010 :
An interesting story, well written, with some surprises. The author has very obviously done his research, not just about the operation that Kasper (the main character) is involved in, but about everything the book touches on.
(reviewed 68 days after purchase)
on Oct. 18, 2010 :
I started reading the 50% teaser, got sucked in by the idea of a 2nd War action as seen from the German side, fascinated by the main character, Kaspar, and HAD to buy the book so I could finish it! Good marketing ploy! The writing, story line flow and characterisation are very good. I then had to buy another book by the same author but as I have no ereader yet have not finished it because I find my desktop monitor eye straining.
(reviewed 27 days after purchase)
on July 10, 2010 :
Very good character study, with just enough use of setting to make me understand the world without getting bogged down in the details.
There's a nice mix of dark humor and sadness, and the ways things play out is very realistic, I think. Definitely glad I read it!
(reviewed 42 days after purchase)
on June 02, 2010 :
I forgot to do the stars.
(reviewed 5 days after purchase)
on June 02, 2010 :
I read this book during a 16 hour car ride. It is not my usual genre, but the author's description and free offer made me give it a try. I am glad to have gotten it.
I couldn't put it down. This story has twists and turns with every other page. Just when you think you have it figured out, the game changes and the old rules no longer apply.
Finally, in the author's notes, it was surprising to find out about the research and realize it is historical fiction based on fact.
I thorougly enjoyed this book and give it my highest recommendation.
DixieGal (Bambi Nix)
(reviewed 4 days after purchase)