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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The One Man by Andrew Gross

Setting: Chicago/Poland
Genre: Historic Fiction
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Release Date: August 23, 2016

I know the name Andrew Gross from James Patterson books. I liked his work in The One Man so much better.

The novel begins in Chicago where a woman is trying to get her elderly father to talk about his days during WWII. From there, it jumps to Poland, WWII, and Washington D.C.

Two men escape the confines of their concentration camp. Fearing they're about to be caught, they find the opposite when they're saved. They hold information into the truth about the concentration camps and how many men, women, and children are being murdered. Their information makes it to President Roosevelt.

Alfred Mendl, a noted physicist, and his family lose their security in a camp in France. Called out for having forged documents, they're brought to a Nazi concentration camp and separated. Meanwhile, the U.S. government is doing all they can to get Mendl out of there for he is one of two people with a secret that must be protected at all costs.

In Washington D.C., Nathan Blum is asked to do the one thing he hates even thinking of doing. The government wants him to sneak into the concentration camp and help Mendl escape.

That's the general story in The One Man. It's gripping and often sad. As some of it is based on truth, it was a painful read. Mendel wasn't a real character, but there are so many that he could have been. Others in the story were based on fact, along with parts of the plot.

I don't generally like historic fiction, but this one drew me in and held my attention. I loved relationships between characters. I found the story flowed swiftly from event to event. Many times, I wanted to stop reading and go to sleep for the night, but something happened to make me say, "Just one more chapter."

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