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Monday, November 7, 2011

Traitor's Emblem - A Review

Gomez-Jurado brings us a ripping good yarn that thrusts in the streets of Munich as Hitler and the Nazis come to power. Lines are drawn and crossed, not just by tradesmen and racial divisions, but in families and lies their feuds uncover.

We are introduced to a less familiar field than many have discovered previously. As well documented as the crimes of terror imposed on Jews, homosexuals and the mentally impaired, less was known, or at least to me anyway, about the Nazi’s pursuits of the Free Masons.

The emblem that is in the title of this spell-binding thriller is a Masonic one, and it is the one connection that fifteen-year-old Paul Reiner has with the father he never knew. Was he the traitor he had been led to believe sold out the Masons to Hitler?

The night Paul’s war-wounded, veteran cousin commits suicide, the secret of what really happened to Paul’s father is revealed and Paul and his mother find themselves cast out from the nobility that have known to become street urchins on the run from the wrath of the family that never quite accepted them in the first place.

As war in Europe threatens again, Paul grows in to a young man in the school of hard-knocks. He strikes back at his reluctant family to avenge both his parents' death, impersonates an SS officer in a bold move to release his true love, Alys, from the clutches of Dachau and as he reunites with the family he never knew he had, he faces the inevitable conclusion that he has spent his whole adult life searching for his father’s real murderer and the reason he was killed, a map detailing the treasure that awaits them in the Dark Continent.

With Nazis at their heels they must get out of pre-war Germany and to a neutral country such as Portugal. Perhaps they can survive but as the war reaches South Africa and touches them they will need more than good luck to survive, they’ll need diamonds.

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