The Crooked Maid

The Crooked Maid

A Novel

Book - 2013
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A dark and suspenseful novel set in post-war Vienna among the spectators in a criminal trial Mid-summer, 1948. Two strangers, Anna Beer and young Robert Seidel, meet on a train as they return to Vienna, where life is just resuming after the upheavals of war. Men who were conscripted into the German army are filtering back home, including Anna's estranged husband, Dr. Anton Beer, who was held prisoner in a brutal Russian camp. But when Anna returns to their old apartment, she finds another man living there and her husband missing. At his own house, Robert is greeted by a young maid with a deformed spine. The household is in disarray, with his mother addicted to narcotics and his stepfather, an industrialist and former Party member, hospitalized after a mysterious attack. Determined to rebuild their lives, Anna and Robert each begin a dogged search for answers in a world where repression is the order of the day. Before long, they are reunited as spectators at a criminal trial set to deliver judgment on Austria's Nazi crimes.
Publisher: Toronto, Ontario :, HarperCollins Publishers Ltd.,, 2013.
Copyright Date: ©2013
ISBN: 9781443407748
Characteristics: 427 pages ;,23 cm.


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Jan 08, 2017

Well written mystery, history, fiction.

Very dark reading, crass in many places (the type of description of dirt and gore to appeal to 12 year old boys). There is no comic relief, it all gets worse and worse for the characters. If you like Kafka you'll love this book. I had to skim through it as it was too emotionally brutal. I could not connect with the humanity in any of these characters.

Marie_45 Apr 27, 2014

What a great read, really enjoyed the character and the storyline. the author made a good description of the sense of time an place.

Apr 08, 2014

Great read 5 stars.
Postwar Vienna and all the trauma that resulted. Finalist for the 2013 Giller Prize. It should have won. Great sense of time and place

Nov 24, 2013

Implausible scenes, improbable characters, disappointing overall.

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