Get Your Free Audiobook

A Woman in Berlin

Eight Weeks in the Conquered City: A Diary
Narrated by: Isabel Keating
Length: 10 hrs and 26 mins
Categories: History, 20th Century
5 out of 5 stars (5 ratings)

Non-member price: $44.51

After 30 days, Audible is $16.45/mo. Cancel anytime.

Publisher's Summary

A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice.

For eight weeks in 1945, as Berlin fell to the Russian army, a young woman kept a daily record of life in her apartment building and among its residents. "With bald honesty and brutal lyricism" (Elle), the anonymous author depicts her fellow Berliners in all their humanity as well as their cravenness, corrupted first by hunger and then by the Russians. "Spare and unpredictable, minutely observed and utterly free of self-pity" (The Plain Dealer, Cleveland), A Woman in Berlin tells of the complex World War II relationship between civilians and an occupying army and the shameful indignities to which women in a conquered city are always subject - the mass rape suffered by all, regardless of age or infirmity.

A Woman in Berlin stands as "one of the essential books for understanding war and life" (AS Byatt, author of Possession).

©2002 Hannelore Marek. Copyright AB – Die Andere Bibliothek GmbH & Co. KG, Berlin 2011 (First published by Eichborn Verlag, Frankfurt am Main, 2003). Translation copyright 2005 by Philip Boehm. Foreword copyright 2005 by Hans Magnus Enzensberger. Introduction copyright 2005 by Antony Beevor. (P)2017 Macmillan Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    4
  • 4 Stars
    1
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Performance

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    3
  • 4 Stars
    1
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Story

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    4
  • 4 Stars
    1
  • 3 Stars
    0
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great all around, even the narrator !

Where does A Woman in Berlin rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This has been the best all around I have in months !

Which scene did you most enjoy?

The story and great narrator,

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Jordan J.
  • Jordan J.
  • 12-07-2017

Brutal Honesty

Where does A Woman in Berlin rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Very high

What was one of the most memorable moments of A Woman in Berlin?

I wouldn't phrase the constant rapes and memorable... but they were certainly standouts. Today's society talks about problems... but frankly our problems pale in comparison to what some of our forebears endured. Its humbling to know our lives have been spared many atrocities that others have not.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Survival is enough

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Simone
  • Simone
  • 05-09-2019

Fascinating

What so impressed me about this book was the diary itself. I’m amazed.

When I kept a diary, it was a few disjointed sentences with no context or explanation – this woman wrote novellas with each entry! Just the time that must have taken blows me away.

The content is fascinating of course, well worth the read.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for mrtymb
  • mrtymb
  • 06-07-2019

The most moving

This is the most moving account of war from a women’s or anybody’s perspective I I have ever read. If you think you understand the effects of war, read this!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for jean-louis jaumin
  • jean-louis jaumin
  • 27-06-2019

Need to listen to this book!

This is not an easy book but important one. It remained us what war brings and the fate of women in such situations.
It is actual and is not linked to time or place. It applies every war and any women trapped in any war

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Amazon Customer
  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-05-2019

Excellent

This book is a new favorite! I have a paperback copy as well! I highly recommend the audio version it was easy listening.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for OCTAVIO FRANCISCO MEJIA
  • OCTAVIO FRANCISCO MEJIA
  • 19-03-2019

A heartbreaking tale of a woman in Berlin

Germany fell on the hands of monsters who lead the nation to war against all Europe, and they were doomed to defeat.

Who attacked and attempted to destroy the Jewish people from the face of the earth,

When you read the plans that President Roosevelt had against the German people to starve them to death, the carpet bombing against innocent civilians.

And the Red Army, who wanted revenge for all the suffering, they endured at the hands of the German army. Stalin was a monster against his own people, what could expect their enemies if he killed more than 20 million Russian in the gulags?

It is a dark chapter in human history, that we must never forget and avoid repeating the same mistake that xenophobic, power-hungry politicians lead us to war.

Because at the end those who pay the consequences are the women and children, the elderly who can't defend themselves from the invading armies.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Rodney
  • Rodney
  • 16-07-2019

Extremely poor translation - or a fake diary

I can see why so many have questioned if this diary is real or not - the english translation is extremely poor, seemingly needlessly modernized, and if it wasn't modernized then it's a fake in my opinion. I've literally read hundreds of WW2 books and dozens of diaries from that time, including ones from women, and none of them read like this. Yes, I get there are different writing styles and dark humor is a way people often deal with situations, but by no other books from this timeframe read like this I mean none use the language used here, none use this style of pacing, the types of sentences, etc. There's all sorts of tells that this diary, as presented, isn't authentic, including the way overused phrase, 'you couldn't make this up'. Well, yes, yes you could make it up pretty easily. Additionally many of the stories presented here I've heard before in books that were written before this was ever released. Again, yes, many people suffered from the same abuses, that doesn't mean it's not real, just combined, the story, the writing, the pacing, it just comes off as inauthentic. In fact this translation reads like it was written by a white American feminist in the 80s - which, according to the intro, was exactly the case. Seemingly much of the language was 'updated' to make it more 'relatable', that's how I read a lot of it anyways. Because of this it comes off as extremely inauthentic and constantly the book made me think this is fake. Again, I've read extensively about WW2, the last days of Berlin in particular, the events in the book are very credible, the mass rapes did happen - but I do not believe the events as presented in this translation. Hopefully a straight translation will sooner or later be made available - but if this is a good translation, I can see why so many people have rejected this book as being fake.

As for the reader it was another poor choice. The reader reads this as if it's a romance novel - and doesn't at all have the gravitas you'd want for a story like this. Yes, the book uses a bunch of dark humor, but still the reader just isn't a good pick. Additionally the reader often would finish a story while still going up in the sentence, so whatever was being emphasized was missed, thus taking a joke or lighthearted comment and making it sound like a statement. I think the reader got better at not doing this as the story went along, but it's also possible I just became used to it and learned to ignore it, I'm really not sure.

Overall I'd still give this book 2-stars, assuming it is in fact a real diary. If you've never ever read a WW2 book before and you don't care about massive liberties being taken with the original source material - then I guess this is better than nothing since there isn't a lot like this on Audible and if you don't know the massive war atrocities that took place at the hands of the socialists - in particular as there is a huge surge in socalist sympathizers today in America that literally don't know a single thing about what they support.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful