Sunday, June 21, 2009
Voices Under Berlin
A week ago I received a letter from a guy who writes fiction under the name T. H. E. Hill. Col. Bob Browne had referred Hill to me after Hill had read Bob's new manuscript, which contains my contribution to the manuscript in an appendix.. [See Col. Bob's book, posted on May 3, herein.] Hill wanted me to review his recent book Voices under Berlin, a tale of a Monterey Mary, a novel about the notorious Berlin tunnel of 1955-56. Since he is 15 years younger than I, he had to rely on archival stuff to add to his own Cold War Army experience in Berlin.
What I'm finding interesting about Hill's book, which he had sent, is that it's fun! At first I experienced a bit of cognitive dissonance, since my own participation in those years was somber. But this book is loaded with hidden names, jargon and good humored jabs at the old days. Hill has reminded me several times (when I complain about any discrepancy between his tale and my on-site experience) that it is fiction and supposed to be funny. I suppose this is healthy
In exploring other Amazon reviews of this and his other books, with and without his pen name, I've tapped into a mother load of ex-spook authors! No sooner do I contact one (with one exception so far) with a reference to my story and an appreciation of theirs, do I get a generous reply. These guys take one another seriously! They don't back off from responding clearly, candidly AND compassionately. Refreshing! Looks like I've found a fraternity!