The plot thickens when Mike’s daughter comes to visit him, and falls in love with the Director of the Stasi Archive where Mike is doing his research. The Director is none other than Ilse’s son. Since the course of true love is never easy, there is a barrier to creating an “us” out of this German-American couple. In this case it is the question of whether the Archive Director is her half-brother.
Then add an IRA informant in witness protection who thinks that Mike is a hit man sent to rub her out, and serve stirred, not shaken in a classy cover.
The advance copies of the chapters that I have seen hint at a political thread in the novel. What’s that going to be about?
The political thread is just that: a hint. It runs parallel to Mike’s reunification with his Ilse, and her angry reaction to seeing him again. The political winds in Berlin changed after the Berlin Wall fell, and Germany was reunited. When I lived there in the 1970s, Kennedy was still incredibly popular in Berlin for his “Ich bin ein Berliner” speech a decade before. Now, a generation after the Berlin Wall fell, German politicians are steering a new policy course intended to demonstrate their independence from America, and Americans are not as popular in Berlin as they used to be.
I guess that this is to be expected when you consider that German President Joachim Gauck and Chancellor Angel Merkel were both raised in the East. We didn’t do them any favors when the country was divided among the four victorious Allied powers.
The merger of East and West Germany made some unexpected changes in the German Weltanschauung [mindset]. The thread of ‘is there is still an “us” in U.S.—F.R.G. relations,’ plays out in the background in parallel to Mike and Ilse trying to figure out if there is an “us” in their relationship.
There was a cryptologic contest to break the encrypted message in The Day Before the Berlin Wall: Could We Have Stopped It. Will there be another one in Reunification?
Yes, there will be. The display quote at the beginning of the book will be encrypted. The prize will be the same as the other cryptologic contest I run on my website: a signed copy of one of my novels.