Book look: Salzburg crimes, wartime memories and the magic of music

Cornelsen, a German publishing house, not only releasesleise kommt exercise books. On a regular basis, it also publishes reading books for people learning German. “Leise kommt der Tod” is such a release. The book contains a short story full of suspense as two German detectives try to clarify whether a Salzburg resident was killed by his greedy wife. However, the episode – which promises a plot about “Poison and cash in Salzburg” – also includes facts about local traditions, typical Salzburg food and the Salzburg Festival. Other great features of “Leise kommt der Tod” are a map and a CD which contains the nine-chapter story read by Eva Gaigg.

Leise kommt der Tod
By Roland Dittrich
Published by Cornelsen (www.cornelsen.de)

Helmut Schmidt, his late wife Loki and five other people – some of them close friends of the former chancellor – reveal very personal war era experiences in “Kindheit und Jugend unter Hitler”. They write about how their families dealt with the growing anti-Semitism in Nazi Germany and why relief was not the dominating feeling when World War Two was finally over. The articles – which were created in 1990 and 1991 – also deal with learning to get along on one’s own as child and teenager as parents were busy trying to make ends meet. Being a member of the Hitler Youth and what it felt like to fear for the lives of close relatives in the army are other issues which are dealt with in the book.

Kindheit und Jugend unter Hitler
By Loki Schmidt, Helmut Schmidt, Ruth Loah and others
Published by Pantheon (www.randomhouse.de/pantheon)

Joachim Kaiser, one of Germany’s most renowned literature and music critics, answers questions music enthusiasts may have never dared to ask. In “Sprechen wir über Musik”, he also creates a code of conduct for going to the opera. Kaiser also explains why breaks and quiet moments are of such great importance in music. The journalist – who published his memoirs “Ich bin der letzte Mohikaner” five years ago – brilliantly merges information and entertainment in his new book. His passion for music is evident.

Sprechen wir über Musik. Eine kleine Klassik-Kunde.
By Joachim Kaiser
Published by Siedler (www.siedler-verlag.de)

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