No Man's Land
By: Michael CalifraAn expatriate American living in West Berlin experiences the fall of the Berlin Wall and the tumult of German reunification on a journey from an age of idealism to The End of History.
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Book DescriptionIt was a beautiful dream; as compelling and just as any in history - yet unattainable. Realizing it meant overcoming entrenched ideological and political divisions that had split a city and the world for half a century. Then it happened; overnight and without warning. And nothing would ever be as it was before.
Set in the divided city of Berlin just before the revolutions of 1989, continuing through the unexpected fall of the Wall and German reunification, No Man's Land chronicles events as experienced by Richard, an expatriate American working an unsatisfying yet profitable job selling software for a small US firm.
As the story unfolds, he meets an array of people on both sides of the Berlin Wall; among them are Katerina Weber, the only child of a funeral director hell-bent on living every moment to the fullest; Knut Heino, a theology student working toward priesthood in an effort to avoid a real job, (according to Knut, work is the consequence of original sin, therefore, he wanted nothing to do with it); and Klaus, a former East German boarder guard who went over the Wall and could never adjust to life in the West.
Stranded in West Berlin without the means to leave, Klaus asks Richard for a favor that requires an excursion to the eastern city. There he meets Traudi Franzke, an idealistic young nurse.
The relationship that ensues, separated from reality by the notorious concrete border, exposes hopes long since betrayed but clung to nevertheless. It is a relationship that outlasts the Wall and the tumult of German reunification until Traudi's life is destroyed by a secret past, completing a journey from an age of ideology to The End of History.
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