Book Review: The Girl On The Platform

An aspiring, artistic soul descended from Prussian aristocracy, her Uncle Wend a major contributor to the burgeoning Nazi Party, Libertas (Libs) becomes a member of the Party in order to secure employment at Metro-Goldwyn Studios in Germany in the early 1930s.

Being young and naive about politics, her eyes are quickly opened by the effects the Law For The Restoration of the Professional Civil Services is having in her country. Jews are being ostracized and losing jobs to make room for “beautiful, purebred Aryans.”

The studio is busy removing all history of former German filmmakers who were Jewish, one of which is Fritz Lang, whom Libs accidently bumps into on a train platform as he is trying to escape Germany before it’s too late.

Making connections with others in the movie industry, Libs learns that Minister Goebbels isn’t just interested in Jews, but socialists and communists. Those who can work in the movie industry must be dedicated to glorifying the new Germany, as well as the heritage of the German people, vilifying those who don’t fit. She watches on as art and literature are banned, and attends a book burning.

One of her new acquaintances is Martin Tressler. Libs soon after receives a summons from the Gestapo. They want her to sign a document attesting to Mr. Tressler’s suicidal tendencies. When she protests, they inform her that the man she talked to a few days ago is already dead, jumped from a window. Still, Libs refuses to sign and the Gestapo let her go, informing her that plenty of others have already signed. Libs contemplates quitting her job.

A friend introduces her to a handsome man named Harro who works in the Air Ministry. In short time they fall in love, and she learns that Harro was once detained by the SS and brutally beaten. He watched as they killed his best friend. And as it turns out, this event has a connection with the death of Martin Tressler. Harro has been trying to remain quiet about his past subversive activity but with Libs at his side, they begin working for the resistance. They use their jobs to gather information, create posters and smuggle out information, eventually dealing with the Soviet Embassy in Paris and the Red Orchestra.

Libs and Harro experience successes and losses along the way until … well, you’ll have to read the book to find out what happens to them.

I’ve read a lot of Author Ellie Midwood’s books and they never fail to impress. The Girl on the Platform is based on real characters, on real heroes. The tale absorbs the reader into that horrible time period and holds them hostage. And as always, her work points a small spotlight on troubles plaguing our world today. I highly recommend this book. Five Stars!

Allen M Werner is the author of the epic fantasy series The Crystal Crux

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