Website of Novelist
I AM GERMANY
Historicl Fiction Company "Highly Recommended" Novel
Published by Koehler Books September 27, 2022
Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, IndieBound
I am a former attorney (please don't hold it against me) who took an audacious plunge and quit the law, decing to become an unpublished novelist. My first novel, I AM GERMANY, won the "Highly Recommended" award two months after publication. I never try to impose my views on the reader but rather make her come to her own conclusions. I love to write and manipulate words.
It was the first holocaust, the one no one writes or reads about. It covertly stole the lives of thousands of children.
In 1930s Germany, before the war, Anna Himmel was Henry Schultz's secret first love. She was a child-prodigy violinist and, to him, the embodiment of German high art and culture. But when the issue of national reunification draws a widowed, grieving Henry back to Germany in 1989, a half century after his family fled the growing Nazi threat, she is a shell of who she had been before the war. As Anna reluctantly shares a story of having tried to save a disabled little girl in 1940 at the Hartheim Castle, a secret Nazi euthanasia site, Henry starts to realize the depths of the evil he left behind--and of the consequences of trying to forget.
But she cannot bear to give voice to the end of the story. To answer once and for all the question of how normal people slip piecemeal into evil, Henry sets out to the castle alone to find the ending himself. What he discovers there will change both of them forever.
THE PRESS and other accolades
The chief executuve of The Historical Fiction Company, wrote in December, 2022, "Congratulations, your book has won a 5-star [and] a 'Highly Recommended' award of excellence from The Historical Fiction Company [and] entry into this year's book of the year contest."
Pacific Book Review wrote in December, 2022, that I AM GERMANY is a "tender and evocative novel . . . [and] is genuinely a triumph--both in its construction and content. . . . Haunting yet beautiful, [the book] brims with adeptness and spirit. It embraces the reader and does not let go. Altogether, the author's work qualifies as a sumptuous repast for the heart and soul."
Kirkus Reviews wrote in December, 2022, "At the heart of Witt's bewitching tale is a provocative commentary on what it means to possess historical knowledge and, more specifically, to fully comprehend the scholarly documentation of evil. . . . Just as gripping is the account given of [a character's] grim metamorphosis, a thoughtful commentary on both the malleability of human character as well as the extraordinary effectiveness of a well-conceived (if nihilistic) program of manipulation. . . . This is a moving, even terrifying book. . . . An artfully discomfiting book, wise and fascinating."
BookViral Reviews wrote in December, 2022, that the book is "a page-turner" that is an "unforgettable journey into the heart of darkness . . . [and casts] a robust, uninterrupted spell over its readers. . . . Witt's characters characters are so well imagined that his narrative simply takes over and puts you beside them. . . . I Am Germany proves a powerful debut for Witt and is highly recommended."
Thomas R. Smith, a retired Penn State English professor, wrote that the book is "gripping . . . compelling . . . absorbing . . . [and] disturbing." But ultimately it "reveals the power of love and culture to endure despite seemingly insurmountable obstacles" and therefore is "uplifting."
For Marina Ostipova, an author of numerous historical novels, the novel was a "gripping read. The characters spring from the page with their flaws, trials, and hardships. Among the cruelty of the times, there is also love which carries through decades, and it makes the story even more enthralling and will keep you guessing until the very end." Before the reader gets to the end, there are "spine-tingling adventures [and] mind-numbing horror" that "captivated me. The scenes are still playing in my head. However disturbing, the novel makes for an excellent read. Highly recommended."
Stuart Horwitz, an award-winning poet and the founder of Book Architecture, wrote that "Witt shakes awake little-known facets of WW II history through daring and heartfelt story-telling, capturing a forgotten story of German culture and the Nazi euthanasia of children. Between its vivid descriptions and believable, sometimes cantankerous characters, the story gets in you . . . and doesn't let go."
Simon O'Corra, an award-winning screenwriter almost ready to begin writing a movie script for this novel, wrote that the book is "dreamlike" and an "epic narrative" that "operates on many clever levels and this is what makes it so exciting. For instance, German High Art and Culture is interwoven into the story. . . . Interestingly, running alongside and binding the story together is a decades old unrequited love story between the two main characters, and this aspect brings a freshness to the serious elements of the story. It is a masterful story . . . ."