Reviews

  • Beautiful and gripping, it unfolds like a detective story as an obscured past emerges into the light.

    Hadley Freeman, author of House of Glass: The Story and Secrets of a Twentieth-Century Jewish Family
  • Memorable and chilling... As well as a brilliant researcher, Lee proves himself to be an insightful narrator - of both the life of a Nazi "desk murderer", and the continuing attempts of Griesinger's family to come to terms with the long shadow his role as an SS officer has cast over their lives.

    PD Smith, Guardian
  • An intriguing, honest and superbly documented portrait of what could be called an 'unremarkable' SS life... The strength of Lee's book is the way these facts of history are twinned with the perverted domesticity of everyday Nazism... The armchair stuffed with hidden swastikas is an apt symbol for that weird and disturbing double life.

    Bart van Es, Spectator
  • [An] absorbing work of historical detection... Lee's riveting book opens a window onto the life of an "ordinary" Nazi.

    Ian Thomson, Evening Standard
  • Understand this mediocre, provincial Nazi and you understand the terrible tragedy of 20th-century Germany... This is an admirable work of historical research, and is carefully and briskly written. Lee has been a pitbull of a researcher.

    David Aaronovitch, The Times
  • A page-turning piece of detective work in which the Jewish historian painstakingly weaves together scraps of evidence to assemble a fascinating portrait of an ordinary man who helped perpetrate extraordinary crimes... Utterly compelling.

    Robert Philpot, Jewish Chronicle
  • Balancing historical research of the highest professional level with writing...that reads like a fast-paced detective novel... The SS Officer's Armchair is such a compelling read because Lee leaves no stone unturned... Fascinating.

    Renee Ghert-Zand, The Times of Israel
  • This is a little gem of a book. It is beautifully written and reads as grippingly as a detective story. The story of the quest is fascinating in itself but the result is also a work of serious historical scholarship. Its reconstitution of the life and career of an 'ordinary Nazi' throws revealing light on the workings of the Nazi regime.

    Julian Jackson
  • A fascinating true-life detective story, as the author engagingly chronicles his searches in archives and interviews with elderly survivors... An illuminating biography and more evidence for the "banality of evil".

    Kirkus Reviews
  • Richly detailed and eloquent... Lee's granular focus reveals the mechanisms by which ordinary Germans were drawn into horrific crimes. Even those well-versed in the history of the Holocaust will learn something new.

    Publishers Weekly

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