The Second Son

The Second Son

3.7 (326 ratings by Goodreads)
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On the Eve of Hitler's Olympics, Chief Inspector Nikolai Hoffner is forced out of the Kriminalpolizei because he is a half Jew. Hoffner is not surprised given the rise of Nazism, and anyway his focus is elsewhere. His son Georg is missing in Spain, swept up in the sudden outbreak of the civil war. He has already lost Sascha, his elder son, to the Nazi regime. But Georg is not what he appears to be, and when Hoffner discovers this, he is determined to save the one son he can.

The Second Son is the final installment in Jonathan Rabb's Berlin trilogy, set between the two world wars.

Now, nearly ten years after the events of Shadow and Light, Hoffner finds himself tossed into the chaos that is Spain - where he quickly meets anarchists, Soviet and British secret agents, and a female doctor called Mila Pera - as he follows a trail of clues left by Georg.

Rabb delivers another brilliant atmospheric work.

On Rosa: "a ghostly noir that could have been conspired at by Raymond Chandler and Andre Malraux." Harper's

On Shadow and Light (2009), "brilliantly plotted narrative." Washington Post
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Product details

  • Paperback | 304 pages
  • 142 x 215 x 23mm | 346g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1905559224
  • 9781905559220

Review quote

""The Second Son" is an unusual blend of hard-boiled detective novel and love story . . . the narrative never flags. It proves that first-rate detectives are like good lovers and good novelists: keenly observant, intuitive and tough as nails." --Tara McKelvey, "The New York Times Book Review

"Rabb works wonders, juggling Nazi sympathizers and anarchists and guilty bystanders and innocent warriors with an alacrity few in his generation can maintain . . . Inspector Hoffner flies off into the oncoming darkness, having accomplished Rabb's mission, of carrying to completion this engrossing trilogy on his strong shoulders." --Alan Cheuse, "The Dallas Morning News
""A powerful, shocking and moving novel . . . Rabb is an accomplished storyteller as well as a superb stylist, and the conclusion of his trilogy is at once affecting and effective in its portrayal of the run-up to a global nightmare." --Jay Strafford, "The Richmond Times-Dispatch
""The chaos of the war provides an evocative backdrop for this unlikely, noir-tinged story of a cynical father chasing after his idealistic son . . . This is Alan Furst territory, but it will also resonate for readers of European antiwar fiction, from "All Quiet on the Western Front" to "The Good Soldier Schweik."" --Bill Ott, "Booklist" (starred review)

"Gripping . . . Fans of Alan Furst and Philip Kerr will be rewarded." --"Publishers Weekly
""An exhilarating bittersweet thriller that brings to life Spain during the violent civil war." --Harriet Klausner, Genre Go Round
"Questions of political intrigue are all handled with expertise. The story's tempo builds and crescendos with a surprising denouement that will leave readers satisfied. Fans of Alan Furst, Philip Kerr, and Olen Steinhauer will feel very much at home with Rabb's "The Second Son," and readers of the Spanish Civil War will nod their heads in approval of how well Rabb researched this very important time in history when the
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About Jonathan Rabb

Jonathan Rabb lives in Savannah, Georgia, with his wife and their two children.
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Rating details

326 ratings
3.7 out of 5 stars
5 21% (68)
4 40% (129)
3 31% (100)
2 7% (23)
1 2% (6)
Book ratings by Goodreads
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