The Valhalla Exchange Paperback
by Jack Higgins
The electrifying WWII bestseller from the master of the game.
On the 30th April 1945, Russian radar reported a light aircraft leaving the vicinity of the Tiergarten in Berlin.
But who was on board, and where was the plane going?
Berlin was in ruins as the Russians moved relentlessly towards the concrete bunker where the Nazi adminstration had been destroyed.
But one man, Reichsleiter Martin Bormann, Adolf Hitler's secretary and eminence grise had a daring plan to escape.
Far away to the south-west , at Schloss Arlberg above the River Inn, five prisoners of war were contemplating their fate.
Would they be murdered by their captors or liberated by the Russians?
Unbeknown to them Bormann has his own plans. They are about to become part of a mystery that has fascinated the world for over sixty years.
What exactly did happen to Bormann and his prisoners?
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 320 pages
- Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
- Publication Date: 18/12/2006
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780007223725
Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.
Review by conformer
Jack Higgins may write paperback thrillers that seem out of place if they're displayed anyplace other than in an airport gift shop, but that doesn't necessarily mean he's deserving of the position.What makes this shoot-em-up different from other fanciful yarns spun out to be untold tales of World War II is the characters. The story itself is a little formulaic and forgettable, but no worse than anything Dan Brown might come up with. And while Higgins' protagonists are trading card clones of gung-ho soldiers, wilting damsels, and golden-hearted peasants, his villains, strangely, are the ones with the most depth. This is saying something, seeing as the bad guys are Nazis. For the most part they don't spew Party rhetoric or act like assholes, but instead harbor feasible fears and doubts.Unfortunately, the book may be a little too easy to read.
Review by Bridgey
The Valhalla Exchange - Jack Higgins *****Another brilliant book from Higgins. Written in the same style that made 'The Eagle has Landed' so popular, Higgins weaves historical fact with his own fiction. The story starts with a reporter arriving in a small village. He wants to have a look at the body of a recently deceased man. While at the morgue he notices an ageing US general approaching, and slips into the shadows unnoticed.The two later meet in bar and the general is confronted by the reporter who wants to know the reason he was there to examine the body. What follows is an intriguing tale of 'what ifs'. We are transported back to the final days in Berlin at the Führerbunker. We meet the Nazi high command and in particular the story concentrates on Martin Bormann and what may/may not have happened to him (any regular Higgins readers will know this a topic he visits on a regular basis).As usual with Higgins we meet a vast number of different characters, with good and bad personalities on either side of the war. In particular we are introduced to Ritter, a highly decorated German Panzer commander, who is described as 'Death itself'. I won't explain the characters or their reasons for being in the novel as this will spoil the storyline for other people. What I will say is that this book is one of Higgins best and will keep you guessing until the very end.