The Last Innocent Hour

Margot Abbott, Author St. Martin's Press $21.95 (505p) ISBN 978-0-312-06377-1
This absorbing first novel, which skillfully evokes life in the '30s and '40s, is the story of a woman who loses her ideals and her love to the ravages of WW II in Nazi Germany. After the war, American army lieutenant Sally Jackson, 33, has returned to her former home in Berlin as part of a special military intelligence unit assigned to analyze photographic evidence of Nazi war crimes. While committed to her job, Sally is afraid of the past; she flinches from thoughts of her German husband whom she left 12 years earlier, and her connections with Nazi brass. But a confrontation with memory is inevitable, and Abbott allows Sally a long first-person flashback to 1933. A Nazi commander's obsession with sex and power corrupts her husband, Christian, turning the sensitive but insecure man into a killing machine and destroying the marriage. As the narrative returns to 1946, Sally breaks through her defenses and takes action to locate Christian. Protracted and melodramatic recollections and a few stereotypical characters detract only slightly from this fascinating psychological drama. 125,000 first printing; $125,000 ad/promo. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/30/1991
Release date: 10/01/1991
Genre: Fiction
Mass Market Paperbound - 978-0-312-92942-8
Paperback - 456 pages - 978-1-937818-49-4
Hardcover - 456 pages - 978-1-937818-56-2
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