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Summary

In 1942 there are worse places to be than Zurich, and detective Bernie Gunther has seen his fair share of them. So when a superior asks him to track down a glamorous German actress believed to be hiding in Zurich, he takes the job.

The actress, it emerges, is the daughter of a fanatical Croatian fascist, the sadistic commandant of a notorious concentration camp, and Bernie finds himself involved in something much more sinister.

©2015 Thynker Ltd (P)2015 W F Howes Ltd

Critic reviews

"Richly layered.... Remarkable." ( Sunday Times on A Man Without Breath)
"Compelling.... Elegantly constructed." ( Financial Times on A Man Without Breath)

What listeners say about The Lady from Zagreb

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A tired series

I was disappointed with the last Bernie Gunther novel, "A man without breath" as I felt the franchise was running out of steam, plus the change of narrator from Jeff Harding to Paul Hecht had robbed the story of great characterisation. The only reason I listened to this was because of the return of Jeff Harding; wise-cracking Bernie himself in my view.

Sadly, polished narration does not change the fact that this is a tired series. For sure, Jeff does an accomplished job in terms of bringing all of the characters to life, but this series is in intensive care compared to the first "Berlin trilogy". The cracks are not as wise (or rapid-fire), the bad guys are not as scary, and the sex and violence is mushy compared to the hard edge of the earlier novels. Bernie is older now and it shows, his steely cynicism feels more like whining bitterness; he is softer, maybe a bit flabby and just ...... tired.

17 people found this helpful

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Another Bernie Gunther Solid.

A real treat for Gunther lovers. Narrator Jeff Harding is brilliant, as usual - the one true voice of Bernie Gunther.

8 people found this helpful

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Bernie at his best .

You just have to love Bernie Gunther.
The twists and turns of this story surprise you at every turn.

7 people found this helpful

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Another piece in the Bernie Gunther jigsaw

What made the experience of listening to The Lady from Zagreb the most enjoyable?

As someone who has read/listened to the whole Bernie Gunther series, this book ties up some of the gaps in his life towards the end of the war. In particular, if you wondered how he ended up married at the end of the war, this book fills that gap.

What other book might you compare The Lady from Zagreb to, and why?

The Bernie Gunther series continues, with plot twists and the romance with the Lady for Zagreb at the centre of the plot. In all some of the twists are now getting predictable, and the connection between the different crimes introduced throughout the novel are a bit far fetched. Never the less it is a good story.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

At first I found the narration a little tiresome, read in the American gumshoe style. However, the narration fits the Gunther character, and I got used to it after a while.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No, although the story moves along at a pace, which made listening a pleasure.

Any additional comments?

Not the best Bernie Gunther novel, but a welcome addition to the collection.

6 people found this helpful

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Another great story.

Another good Bernie Gunther story. Never 100% convinced by the American accent but it doesn't detract from the performance for me.

5 people found this helpful

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Return to form

A return to form for what had become a slightly jaded series. I have read and heard all the books and was pleasantly surprised that I didn't lose interest.
Harding was both convincing and engaging throughout and I now look forward to the next in the series.

4 people found this helpful

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Ok

I got to see the end but can not say I would recommend this book.

6 people found this helpful

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Really well done.

Other than Kerr's needing to include a failed love interest in every book, this was well crafted, lots of interesting people, good writing and character development. In this case the failed love interest was integral rather than merely annoying, so it gets a pass.

I think it's of of his better books. He really developed as a writer. I am sorry Kerr is deceased.

Give it a read if you like hardboiled gumshoes who hate Nazis. It's good enough i am finishing off his series.

2 people found this helpful

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Such a disappointment from a usually great author

Is there anything you would change about this book?

There was very little story in the book, I didn't like how disjointed it was. Not a mystery or a crime book really, just a pretty boring story.

Would you ever listen to anything by Philip Kerr again?

I have read 8 of his books and listened to 2 of them. I usually enjoy them a lot, but this story was a real disappointment. There is currently only 1 left in the series. I will listen to it, but I hope it picks up and is as enjoyable as Kerr's earlier Bernie Gunther novels.

Have you listened to any of Jeff Harding’s other performances? How does this one compare?

No, but he was great.Shame he mispronounced a few things, but I can forgive this because the accents were so great. A lot of good characterisation. I was a little put off by Bernie having an American accent at first, but got past that because otherwise it was a great performance

Do you think The Lady from Zagreb needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

No. It was a very weak Kerr book and should be left where it is.

Any additional comments?

Not up to Kerr's usual standard by a long way. I didn't like the characters, they story was weak and Bernie acted unusually. I know he's not my character, but after 10 books I think I know him very well. He acted out of character. The sex scenes were unnecessary and the love between Bernie and Daliah was very unbelievable

1 person found this helpful

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choose another book

Bad dialogue and an unlikeable character, so bad i could not finish the book. Not recommended.

6 people found this helpful