88 books like Code Name Edelweiss

By Stephanie Landsem,

Here are 88 books that Code Name Edelweiss fans have personally recommended if you like Code Name Edelweiss. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Forty Autumns: A Family's Story of Courage and Survival on Both Sides of the Berlin Wall

Elliot Lord Author Of The Potter

From my list on engaging stories of historical adventures.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have chosen this area of literature because I enjoy expanding my horizons. I love to find out about stories from different cultures and different times that will open my eyes to things I would never have thought about before. The depth of the writing is important to convey the emotions felt by the characters. This is what inspires me in my writing and my book that I have chosen to highlight here is also a story of historical fiction, influenced by my experience of living in Slovakia and finding out from residents about how incredibly different life had been in their country.

Elliot's book list on engaging stories of historical adventures

Elliot Lord Why did Elliot love this book?

Forty Autumns is the story of a family divided by the Berlin wall. One half is stuck behind it living a severely limited life,while the other is able to travel around West Germany and eventually to the USA. Willner put a huge amount of research into this story of her family and the depth of it connects to your emotions. Knowing that your side of the family has freedom, not just to travel but to live, while it is so difficult just to contact the rest of your family, will pull on your heartstrings, hoping that one day, they will be able to reunite.

By Nina Willner,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Forty Autumns as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

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…


Book cover of The Last Year of the War

Elizabeth Musser Author Of By Way of the Moonlight

From my list on time-slip with present day and WWII protagonists.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m a Southern girl from Atlanta who writes ‘entertainment with a soul’ from my writing chalet—tool shed—outside Lyon, France where my husband and I have worked with a non-profit for over 30 years. I love to incorporate little-known historical facts into my award-winning and best-selling contemporary, historical, and time-slip fiction. I want my reader to find not only a good story and an interesting plot, but also the soul in my book and in my characters with themes of betrayal, regret, redemption, forgiveness, and faith that allow my reader to think, to ask questions, to laugh and cry and hope. To be entertained way down in her soul. 

Elizabeth's book list on time-slip with present day and WWII protagonists

Elizabeth Musser Why did Elizabeth love this book?

Susan Meissner is my go-to for wonderfully deep characterization in time-slip novels. The Last Year of the War tells a much less familiar part of WWII, the horrifying way many German and Japanese Americans were interned in camps in Texas during the war years. Elise Sontag is a typical American teenager from Iowa who meets fellow internee Mariko Inoue, a Japanese-American teen from Los Angeles, at the camp. The story is filled with heartache and twists and turns and has a lovely present-day thread that delights and surprises. 

As an author, I am often inspired when I stumble upon little know historical facts as Susan has done here. I incorporated the little known Coast Guard Mounted Patrol into my dual-time of my book

By Susan Meissner,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Last Year of the War as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the acclaimed author of Secrets of a Charmed Life and As Bright as Heaven comes a novel about a German American teenager whose life changes forever when her immigrant family is sent to an internment camp during World War II.
 
In 1943, Elise Sontag is a typical American teenager from Iowa—aware of the war but distanced from its reach. Then her father, a legal U.S. resident for nearly two decades, is suddenly arrested on suspicion of being a Nazi sympathizer. The family is sent to an internment camp in Texas, where, behind the armed guards and barbed wire, Elise…


Book cover of The Train to Crystal City: FDR's Secret Prisoner Exchange Program and America's Only Family Internment Camp During World War II

Stephanie Hinnershitz Author Of Japanese American Incarceration: The Camps and Coerced Labor During World War II

From my list on Japanese American incarceration.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up in central Pennsylvania, I learned little about Japanese American incarceration beyond the brief mention in textbooks. It wasn’t until I came across documents about incarceration camps in Arkansas that I wanted to learn more and spent the next five years exploring this subject. What I took away from my research is that even though confinement in camps only directly affected Japanese Americans, understanding how this tragedy happened is important for all Americans who value democracy. I’m a Senior Historian at the National WWII Museum and work hard to make sure that Japanese American incarceration is included in the larger history of the American home front during the war.

Stephanie's book list on Japanese American incarceration

Stephanie Hinnershitz Why did Stephanie love this book?

Was it just Japanese Americans who were detained during the war? I found myself asking this question before I started researching this topic. Sadly for me, Russell’s book was not yet published. While there are many books that detail the experiences of Germans and Italians (citizen and nationals) with internment, this book focuses on two young, American-born women—one German American, the other Japanese American—and the trials and tragedy they faced when they were detained and deported to Germany and Japan because their parents were foreign-born and eventually returned to the United States. I normally am skeptical of books described as telling “little-known” or “unknown” stories, but this book truly is an examination of an understudied event in the larger story of wartime panic, prejudice, and discrimination.

By Jan Jarboe Russell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Train to Crystal City as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The New York Times bestselling dramatic and never-before-told story of a secret FDR-approved American internment camp in Texas during World War II: “A must-read….The Train to Crystal City is compelling, thought-provoking, and impossible to put down” (Star-Tribune, Minneapolis).

During World War II, trains delivered thousands of civilians from the United States and Latin America to Crystal City, Texas. The trains carried Japanese, German, and Italian immigrants and their American-born children. The only family internment camp during the war, Crystal City was the center of a government prisoner exchange program called “quiet passage.” Hundreds of prisoners in Crystal City were exchanged…


Book cover of Operation Paperclip: The Secret Intelligence Program That Brought Nazi Scientists to America

Robert McParland Author Of The Last Alchemist

From my list on books where history meets mystery.

Why am I passionate about this?

I once had a history advisor in school whom I informed that I was studying history so I could write fiction better. I saw him cringe a bit at that. Even so, I think that history and fiction–and the mystery–go together well. I am always drawn by mystery dramas–and by the drama of real lives facing and unraveling their way through real events. Of course, that led to graduate studies in cultural and intellectual history, to many years of teaching literature, and to passionate reading of mystery novels. Sparkling fiction and strong narrative history, for me, continue to stimulate a sense of wonder at human experience and this incredible universe we live in.    

Robert's book list on books where history meets mystery

Robert McParland Why did Robert love this book?

A secret intelligence program with Nazi scientists is described in such colorful detail that this nonfiction book riveted my attention.

What was most compelling for me was the story of how these scientists and technological experts were utilized by American ingenuity. A fascinating and well-researched history book always holds my interest.  

By Annie Jacobsen,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Operation Paperclip as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the chaos following WWII, many of Germany's remaining resources were divvied up among allied forces. Some of the greatest spoils were the Third Reich's scientific minds--the minds that made their programs in aerospace and rocketry the best in the world. The United States secretly decided that the value of these former Nazis' forbidden knowledge outweighed their crimes, and the government formed a covert organization called Operation Paperclip to allow them to work without the knowledge of the American public.

Drawing on exclusive interviews with dozens of Paperclip family members, with access to German archival documents (including, notably, papers available…


Book cover of Hitler's Jewish Soldiers: The Untold Story of Nazi Racial Laws and Men of Jewish Descent in the German Military

Colin D. Heaton Author Of The Star of Africa: The Story of Hans Marseille, the Rogue Luftwaffe Ace Who Dominated the WWII Skies

From my list on true stories of survival.

Why am I passionate about this?

I began reading about history as a child and fell in love with the WW II aviation stories. Later in life I was able to meet many of the men I read about, interview them, and then write my books with their first person accounts. The greatest satisfaction was putting former enemies together who I could prove had fought each other. The reunions were amazing.

Colin's book list on true stories of survival

Colin D. Heaton Why did Colin love this book?

Bryan has been a long-time friend and an academic colleague. His research unearthed material that was virtually unknown. The Holocaust could never be studied and presented in the same way after his book was published, and I had a small part in his research.

By Bryan Mark Rigg,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Hitler's Jewish Soldiers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

On the murderous road to ""racial purity"" Hitler encountered unexpected detours, largely due to his own crazed views and inconsistent policies regarding Jewish identity. After centuries of Jewish assimilation and intermarriage in German society, eliminating Jews from the rest of the population proved more difficult than he'd anticipated. Nowhere was that process more contradictory and confused than in the German military. Bryan Rigg reveals that a startlingly large number of German military men were classified by the Nazis as Jews or ""partial-Jews"" (Mischlinge), in the wake of racial laws first enacted in the mid-1930s. He demonstrates that the actual number…


Book cover of Pure

Thomas Perry Author Of The Left-Handed Twin

From my list on for learning how to write crime fiction.

Why am I passionate about this?

Thomas Perry is a 74 year old writer who is working on his 30th novel. His books have won a number of honors and awards, including the Edgar from the Mystery Writers of America for The Butcher's Boy, the Gumshoe for Pursuit, the Barry for The Informant, and again for Eddie's Boy. Metzger's Dog was voted by NPR's listeners one of "100 Killer Thrillers--Best Thrillers Ever." He has always believed that a writer's most important job is learning to be a better writer.

Thomas' book list on for learning how to write crime fiction

Thomas Perry Why did Thomas love this book?

This is a risky choice because the author is my old university colleague and later television writing partner, to whom I’ve been married for 41 years. I feel comfortable about it because of the number of fine British and American writers who have recommended this and her earlier books. I picked it because it’s the first novel I’ve read that makes a credible artistic attempt to grasp the experience of the current Pandemic. It’s a murder mystery that takes place during those first few months, when what was happening in the world seemed unthinkable, going out meant breaking a lockdown, and contact with anyone might be fatal. The amateur investigator, a young woman with an aimless and undisciplined past, takes a deep expedition into death, and it galvanizes her into taking charge and being really alive. 

By Jo Perry,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Pure as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Faultlessly imagined and beautifully written, this is one of the best novels I've read all year." –Timothy Hallinan, author of the acclaimed Simeon Grist series

Caught in a pincer movement between the sudden death of Evelyn (her favourite aunt) and the Corona virus, Ascher Lieb finds herself unexpectedly locked down in her aunt’s retirement community with only Evelyn’s grief-stricken dog Freddie for company.

As the world tumbles down into a pandemic shaped rabbit-hole Ascher is wracked with guilt that her aunt was buried without the Jewish burial rights of purification.

In order to atone for this dereliction of familial duty,…


Book cover of The Beautiful Mrs. Seidenman

Sharon Hart-Green Author Of Come Back for Me

From my list on Jewish survival under the Nazis.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always been drawn to stories about Jewish survival. My mother’s family were Yiddish-speaking Jews from Belarus, and as a child I was often asking questions about what their world was like before it was destroyed. I later studied at Brandeis University where I earned my doctorate in Hebrew and Yiddish Literature, and then taught Jewish Literature at the University of Toronto. When my novel Come Back for Me was published, it felt as though many of my lifelong passions had finally come together in one book. Yet I’m still asking questions. My second novel (almost completed!) continues my quest to further my knowledge of all that was lost.

Sharon's book list on Jewish survival under the Nazis

Sharon Hart-Green Why did Sharon love this book?

Despite the title, this is not so much a story of one woman, but a portrait of several individual Jews and Poles caught in the Nazi web during WWII. 

Each chapter is a finely drawn sketch of a single individual tested by fate and circumstance. The author captures how each of these characters responds to his or her plight in ways that are rarely predictable. I was particularly impressed by how the author displays a broad knowledge of national and political movements which he incorporates into the stories.

This provides a nuanced backdrop to the personal struggles experienced by each of his meticulously crafted characters.

By Andrzej Szczypiorski,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Beautiful Mrs. Seidenman as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In Nazi-occupied Warsaw of 1943, Irma Seidenman, a young Jewish widow passes as the wife of a Polish officer, until an informer spots her and drags her off to the Gestapo to await her fate


Book cover of The Family Moskat

Joie Davidow Author Of Anything But Yes: A Novel of Anna Del Monte, Jewish Citizen of Rome, 1749

From my list on Jewish historical novels without Nazis.

Why am I passionate about this?

The books I recommend have stayed with me years after I read them. I’ve always been fascinated by my Jewish heritage and the rich traditions of my forebearers. I’ve incorporated some of that heritage in my own work as an author. Most recently, I published a historical novel about the Jewish Ghetto in Rome, which took me down a rabbit hole of research into Jewish literature. I revisited books I’d loved for decades and discovered new books I loved. 

Joie's book list on Jewish historical novels without Nazis

Joie Davidow Why did Joie love this book?

Singer, one of the great names in Jewish literature, takes his readers to turn of the century Eastern Europe and enfolds them in the hierarchy of Jewish society. He masterfully captures a way of life that flourished before the Second World War.

I was so engrossed in this powerful story I immediately began reading Singer’s other works. 

By Isaac Bashevis Singer, A H Gross (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Family Moskat as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The vanished way of life of Eastern European Jews in the early part of the twentieth century is the subject of this extraordinary novel. All the strata of this complex society were populated by powerfully individual personalities, and the whole community pulsated with life and vitality. The affairs of the patriarchal Meshulam Moskat and the unworldly Asa Heshel Bannet provide the center of the book, but its real focus is the civilization that was destroyed forever in the gas chambers of the Second World War.


Book cover of Wall: The Inside Story of Divided Berlin

Brian Ladd Author Of The Ghosts of Berlin: Confronting German History in the Urban Landscape

From my list on understanding 20th-century Berlin.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a historian of cities and the ways people shape them. Living in Berlin, both before and after the Wall came down, made me aware of how the shared experiences and memories of particular places give meaning to civic life. (And for a historian it was thrilling to find a place where history was taken very seriously.) Although I have since written broader studies—of cars and cities (Autophobia) and of earlier street life (The Streets of Europe)–it was the experience of living in Berlin while learning its history that enabled me to see the layers of meaning embedded in buildings and streets.

Brian's book list on understanding 20th-century Berlin

Brian Ladd Why did Brian love this book?

This book is unjustly neglected because it was published just days before the Berlin Wall fell, an event the author, like the rest of us, failed to foresee. Wyden, a prolific writer who grew up Jewish in Hitler’s Berlin, uses his knowledge of the city to situate stories of highwire diplomacy and sensational escapes against a backdrop of ordinary lives marked by grim repression. 

By Peter Wyden,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Wall as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Discusses the events surrounding the erection of the Berlin Wall, the Wall's devastating effect on those living near it, and its major impact on East-West relations


Book cover of To The Bitter End: The Diaries of Victor Klemperer 1942-45

Frank Trentmann Author Of Out of the Darkness: The Germans, 1942-2022

From my list on the transformation of Germany since Adolf Hitler.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a historian, and I am fascinated by the interplay and tensions between our moral and material lives. In my books, I try to recover how people in earlier periods thought about good and bad and why they acted the way they did. I try to understand how norms and customs change over time and how we came to think of our own as “normal,” which was all but normal not so long ago. I do not believe historians should play being prophets, but I do believe history can help us make better sense of the present.

Frank's book list on the transformation of Germany since Adolf Hitler

Frank Trentmann Why did Frank love this book?

I found this book uniquely moving, gripping, and enlightening.

With his diary, Klemperer, a German Jew, captures the increasingly brutal atmosphere of Nazi Germany and what persecution felt like in everyday life. I admire the sharpness with which he describes the various Germans he encountered–and the range of their reactions–as the deportations and mass murder got under way.

It is a remarkable testimony to the good and evil in humanity.

By Victor Klemperer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked To The Bitter End as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


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