Why this book?
This history reeled me in slowly but relentlessly. At one level it’s the story of a fairly high level but mostly forgotten Nazi official named Otto von Wachter, his constantly deepening entanglement in the German war machine and its horrors, and his post-war flight to Rome, with hopes of joining the “ratline” — Nazis resettled in South America with the help of a well-placed Vatican bishop. The author’s own Jewish family members were among those Wachter sent to their deaths, and his principal living source for the history is Wachter’s son, a fascinating pairing. But at a deeper, even more engrossing level, Ratline is about memory and forgetting, about the delusions that allow us to go on when the truth is too awful to accept.
The Ratline: The Exalted Life and Mysterious Death of a Nazi Fugitive
Why should I read it?
2 authors picked The Ratline as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.
What is this book about?
A tale of Nazi lives, mass murder, love, Cold War espionage, a mysterious death in the Vatican, and the Nazi escape route to Perón's Argentina,"the Ratline"—from the author of the internationally acclaimed, award-winning East West Street.
"Hypnotic, shocking, and unputdownable." —John le Carré, internationally renowned bestselling author
Baron Otto von Wächter, Austrian lawyer, husband, father, high Nazi official, senior SS officer, former governor of Galicia during the war, creator and overseer of the Krakow ghetto, indicted after as a war criminal for the mass murder of more than 100,000 Poles, hunted by the Soviets, the Americans, the British, by Simon…