Forty Autumns : A family's story of courage and survival on both sides of the Berlin Wall

Forty Autumns : A family's story of courage and survival on both sides of the Berlin Wall

Description

In Forty Autumns, Nina Willner recounts the history of three generations of her family - mothers, sisters, daughters and cousins - separated by forty years of Soviet rule, and reunited after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Shortly after the end of the Second World War, as the Soviets took control of the eastern part of Germany, Hanna, a schoolteacher's daughter, escaped with nothing more than a small suitcase and the clothes on her back. As Hanna built a new life in the West, her relatives (her mother, father and eight siblings) remained in the East. The construction of the Berlin Wall severed all hope of any future reunion. Hanna fell in love and moved to America. She made many attempts to establish contact with her family, but most were unsuccessful. Her father was under close observation; her mother, younger sister Heidi and the others struggled to adjust to life under a bizarre and brutal regime that kept its citizens cut off from the outside world. A few years later, Hanna had a daughter - Nina - who grew up to become the first female US Army intelligence officer to lead sensitive intelligence collection operations in East Berlin at the height of the Cold War. At the same time, Heidi's daughter, Cordula, was training to become a member of the East German Olympic cycling team. Though separated by only a few miles, Nina and her relatives led entirely different lives. Once the Berlin Wall came down, and the families were reunited, Nina Willner discovered an extraordinary story. In Forty Autumns she vividly brings to life many accounts of courage and survival, set against the backdrop of four decades that divided a nation and the world.

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Details

Author(s)
Nina Willner
Format
Hardback | 416 pages
Dimensions
163 x 243 x 38mm | 710g
Publication date
04 Oct 2016
Publisher
Little, Brown Book Group
Imprint
Little, Brown
Publication City/Country
London, United Kingdom
Language
English
Illustrations note
16pp plate section and B&W photos throughout the text - taking files from the US
ISBN10
1408707268
ISBN13
9781408707265
Bestsellers rank
122,951