The Unauthorized Autobiography of W.B.: The War Years (1933-1945)
This memoir by Walter Bodlander, in his 90s, reflects on his odyssey as young German Jew in the 1930s fleeing to Switzerland, France, Palestine and returning to his native Germany as an officer in the US Army. The book explores some of the psychological adjustments of a boy, raised in a fully assimilated German family, coming to terms with his Jewish ancestry. Full of self reflection and humor. More
Walter Bodlander—WB—now in his 90s, reflects back on the events in life that shattered the security of his childhood in Germany in the 1930s when Hitler came to power. Less than a decade later, he managed to find his way to the States and joined the Allied military forces and returned to Germany assigned to military intelligence to help defeat the Nazis.
The Unauthorized Autobiography of W.B. is a personal narrative—both universal and historical in scope. It describes a young lad caught up in clashes between world powers. Often alone, he had to make life-determining decisions with no written script in hand.
Life, as W.B. describes it, turned out to be full of adventure, mistakes, loneliness—a search for love, companionship and meaning—in the midst of ever-present dangers. Some way, somehow, he managed to survive—not sure himself—whether it was luck, ingenuity, or destiny.
W.B.’s story is insightful and humorous; his writing, compelling. This memoir is a superb way for youth to understand the realities and dilemmas of World War II that took place more than 70 years ago.