Monday, July 18, 2011
The Traitor's Emblem by Juan Gomez-Jurado
Munich, 1919. After his family fall into disgrace, 15-year-old Paul Reiner and his mother work as servants in the palace of Baron Von Schroeder. Unhappy and full of despair, Paul dreams of the heroic father he never knew. But one night, seconds before committing suicide, Paul's cousin reveals a terrible secret. Paul's father didn't die in the First World War, as he had always been told. He was killed by someone very close to him, and for unclear reasons. This discovery turns Paul's world upside down and from that moment, Paul sacrifices everything to discover the truth behind his father's death, even his love for Alys Tannenbaum, a Jewish-American photographer who helps him on his dangerous pursuit.
The book opens with four Germans being rescued by a Spanish captain on the high seas. In gratitude, they gift Juan Carlos Gonzalez with a gold and diamond emblem. Years later, his son is offered alot of money for the emblem, but he doesn't sell it. The book then takes you back to Munich 1919 to fifteen year old Paul Reiner and his mother. They are servants for Baron von Schroeder and are both unhappy. Paul dreams of his father, the hero - a way to escape his mundane life with his torturous cousins. When a death occurs, Paul and his mom are tossed out.
At this time, Paul learns that all he thought he knew about his father was false. He begins to search for his father and his quest takes him to Alys Tannenbaum, and the two fall in love. Their journey takes them to Africa, a small village where his father served and deemed a traitor because he stole diamonds. His father is later killed, but unbeknown to Paul, the treasure map to the diamonds is almost within his grasp.
Paul's cousin Jurgen, who has always hated Paul, rises to become a high-ranking Nazi officer. Eventually, the two end up head-to-head in a high voltage confrontation that will change their lives forever.
Spanning two countries, and filled with suspense, love, family betrayal, vengeance and hope, The Traitor's Emblem is an epic tale. The author heard this story from a bookseller and spent much of his time researching. It took him to four different countries and his knowledge of the subject rings true through his attention to detail. Passionate, intriguing, exciting and thrilling, The Traitor's Emblem will appeal to many fans. Definitely a keeper!!