World War II

Review: A Divided Spy

A novel by Charles Cumming. St. Martin’s Press, Feb. 14, 2017. 356 pages. (Advance hardcover edition reviewed) Just a few months ago we thought the Cold War was long over, but now it seems to threaten us anew. Ever since John le Carré brought the dark world of spy-vs.-spy into modern popular fiction, it’s been a …

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Review: “Young Once,” by Patrick Modiano, “Marcel Proust for our time”

When Patrick Modiano was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 2014 he was virtually unknown outside France. He is a prolific author, with 30 books published in French, but very few had been translated into English. Yale University press promptly picked up several of them for American publication, and now Amazon teems with Modiano …

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[Review] The Capitalist: A Thriller (A Louis Morgon Thriller), by Peter Steiner

Opening Peter Steiner’s new novel The Capitalist was like visiting an old friend in his quaint cottage in the Loire — comfortable, relaxed (with a glass of good wine) and confident you’re about to hear a great story. I came to Peter’s books with The Resistance, when he presented it at the American Library in …

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Rue Daguerre – a hoppin’ Paris place

Rue Daguerre is always a hoppin’ place, but on Sundays it really comes to life. It’s a magnet for Parisians and tourists looking for a good lunch or really choice groceries – today we bought slices of an outstanding rolled veal roast, from a butcher who normally deals only in poultry. It was a good …

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[Review] The Resistance: A morality tale wrapped in a fine thriller

I CAN’T IMMEDIATELY THINK of a better premise for a novel than the one Peter Steiner found: “I invented two young men and put them in dire circumstances.” He made them members of the French Resistance. “Dire” hardly covers it. Think about it: One of the brothers, Onesime Josquin, is a rifleman standing fruitless duty on …

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Interview with Peter Steiner, author of THE RESISTANCE

Part-Time Parisian welcomes PETER STEINER to its series of author interviews and reviews. He’s a super-creative man — for one, he’s the force behind the New Yorker cartoon absolutely everybody has heard of, the one captioned, “On the Internet, nobody knows you’re a dog.” (See his bio on his Amazon author page.) Today we’re discussing …

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D-Day: The Atlantic Wall and Pointe du Hoc

I’VE WRITTEN several posts about D-Day and the Atlantic Wall, but want to call your attention to this piece from the New York Review of Books. It’s the best explanation of the Pointe du Hoc debacle (an heroic debacle, but a debacle nevertheless) that I’ve seen, and its discussion of the Atlantic Wall and its …

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D-Day on the home front

THE NORMANDY INVASION on D-Day brought Americans to the streets in massive numbers. Some went to rallies, some to church, some just went out to be around their fellow citizens. The web site of the Smithsonian Institution has as remarkable series of pictures made that day. Take a look – it will be time well spent. …

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D-Day: the 70th anniversary

Friday is the 70th anniversary of D-Day, the massive Allied invasion of France whose success made clear World War II was entering its final phases. The war in Europe had been under way almost five years and would slog on another eleven months, until the German government surrendered in May 1945. Normandy was at the …

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