Genre: Currently #279 in Best Sellers Rank for Historical Fiction, German
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services, LLC
Publication Date: November, 2015
Submitted by author for review
Dark, foreboding cover easily gets across the supernatural/occult insinuation.
Interesting choice for the title. This dynamite, hard-driving suspense novel, “Molding Men” by Ray Ronan is a winner from page 1. Molding Men could as easily have been Molding Character.
The abominable living conditions created by war-torn Germany points to all the directions men take in response to the worst that man can do to man–or is it always human? What form can evil actually take? In this supernatural thriller, evil takes the form of Historian, Herr Brandt, as he weaves in and out of multi-plotted cataclysmic historical events combined with the fictional German family of Terrell Engels. It is no secret that Adolph Hitler, ergo his Nazi party, had a fascination with the occult and although other novels have been penned using the knowledge, this tale takes a unique twist. The story weaves in the fictional “Historian” character, whose principle is that he does not record history; he creates it.
Historian is more terrifying than the Gestapo or Secret Police as he preys on the weak to create history. His malevolent presence in a scene easily creates tension as he looks to collect those he perceives in his debt. The book runs the gambit of characters from the staunch Nazi-supporter uncle of Theo to the innocent young soldiers inducted in a war neither of their choice nor strength to save themselves.
Theo’s family includes Ida, a nurse, his daughter and son and they are not alone in their silent but dangerous rebellion to the escalating demands of Nazi terror tactics. The son is brought back from the disastrous theatre in Stalingrad incurring the interest of Herr Brandt, and his interest extends to the family as each fight against the Nazi machine. The dialogue is realistic and easily translates into credible family conversations as well as between Theo and Pietr, his close factory associate. Theo is immensely sympathetic as he struggles with the fate of the factory workers as well as his own family.
As the war progresses and death and destruction are rained down on their ancient and beautiful city of Dresden, the description of the bombs devastation escalates into the obliteration of hastily built but inadequate shelters and places the reader in the middle of ear-splitting bursts and noxious, oxygen depleting fumes so real you’ll feel the need for fresh air and safety.
I was given this book in exchange for a review–and was blown away. Other than the current spate of edit errors (which are to be corrected shortly), this book should be on the best seller’s list for everyone to read and digest. Please–we don’t ever want to see this history repeated!
The Author: Ray Ronan, who lives in Dublin with his two sons, is an author and airline pilot. He co-wrote his first book with International Bestseller, Glenn Meade. The book, “Seconds to Disaster” was backed by Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, who is portrayed by Tom Hanks in the movie “Miracle on the Hudson.”
Rosepoint rating (assuming current edit corrections): Five of Five
©2016 Virginia Williams