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Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: - Book is clean and in very good condition. - Pages and dust cover are intact and not marred by notes or highlighting. - The spine is solid and undamaged.
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Zero Over Berlin Hardcover – July 1, 2004

4.0 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A major Japanese talent in detective and thriller fiction appears in English with this excellent, compact WWII tale. Hitler decides to build a Japanese Zero fighter, and Japanese navy officials, with mixed feelings about the alliance with Germany, have to find some way of getting two Zeros from Japan to Germany. This involves picking two maverick pilots, Lt. Keichi Ando and NCO Kyohei Inui, and arranging for airfields in British territory (India) and British-patrolled territory (Iran and Iraq). Both pilots are well-drawn characters, Ando especially, and competent sketches of people like Gaj Singh, an anti-British maharajah; Ando's sister Michiko; and American pilot of fortune Jim Purvis lend depth to the book. So do the flying scenes (including a raid on British Victoria bombers in Iraq, into which the Japanese pilots are blackmailed by Iraqi Colonel Hussein). Sasaki also draws on the wartime history of Japan to deal with themes not well-known to Western readers, including the rivalry between the Japanese army and navy and the "culture war" between Japanese patriotically sticking to traditional ways and those maintaining modern tastes. The writing is sometimes awkward but never incomprehensible, the pacing breakneck, the cast a trifle large for the length, but the total effect a compact Japanese version of a W.E.B. Griffin novel.
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Review

"...a compact Japanese version of a W.E.B. Griffin novel." - Publishers Weekly

"Much more than just a plane-ride story, Zero Over Berlin offers a broad canvas of a world uneasily slipping into a world war. "- The Complete Review
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Vertical; First Edition edition (August 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1932234098
  • ISBN-13: 978-1932234091
  • Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 1.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,162,116 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
When I first read the book it was almost like the mission really happened. This is also part of a trilogy of books based during WW2.

As for this being a pro-axis book. Come on, pilots of an axis power would consider England as the enemy. This doesn't mean that the book is trying to make what Japan did in WW2 acceptable. One of the two pilots, Ando, even hates the Japanese military for what they have done.

On a side note, I saw the author talk about this book in San Francisco. It's interesting that an engineer for Honda would become an author.

Even he is sure this book will not become a movie or mini-series, as a couple of his other books have in Japan, because of the production cost.
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Format: Hardcover
I was excited to read this book, as the idea behind it was something I thought about even as a kid- if the Germans didn't have a fighter that could escort their bombers to their targets and back, why not use a fighter like the Zero which had some great range? After a couple chapters, the book hooked me, but I had a hard time with the ending. I'm not going to give anything away, but it's just that it was very anti-climactic compared to the rest of the story. It's almost as if the publisher gave the author his manuscript back and said "shorten it" and he cut off the ending. Otherwise it is a plausible scenario and highly readable. Obvious that some research took place here to get the details right. Last thing- regarding the one comment from "Zombie" about it being "Pro-Axis". To some degree you can't get away from it, seeing that the story is being told from the Japanese side. However, as others have also mentioned, the main character is hardly a die-hard militarist and even other characters have doubts about the war.

BTW, what are the other books in the trilogy? I've only seen this one...
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Format: Hardcover
I picked up this book at a library sale for $1. I didn't expect much, having never heard of Joh Sasaki, and after the first 25 pages or so I recall thinking "if this doesn;t grab my interest soon, it's time to start another book". Soon after that I was hooked. What makes this book interesting is the concept of "what might have happened had the Germans had a long range, nimble fighter during the Battle of Britain"? In my opinion the book is neither pro-axis, pro-allies or evn pro-war. It is a story about the personal and professional struggles of some pilots (and others) who happen to be on the axis side of the War. Being a WWII buff and understanding this is fiction, I found it entertaining and a quick read. I look forward to the other two books in this "trilogy".

The only negative mark is that it lacks a little in the prose. I imagine this happens when books are translated from one language to another, so no fault to he author. It was a little less "smooth" than reading Ludlum, Follett, etc.
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