Fiction. Jewish Studies. Margot Brenner seems to have everything a 25-year-old could want: a medical degree, a pediatric internship at a prestigious New York hospital, an attentive boyfriend. So why does she abandon her boyfriend and internship for a position at a second-rate hospital in a small German city? She knows her father and brother were victims of the holocaust when they became trapped in Germany at the onset of WWII, but she wants…specifics. Her father’s old friend, Willie Meinhof, who sheltered them as long as he could, and who suffered for that, should know. In Wolfenbuttel, where Willie and his son, also a doctor, now live, Margot finds surprising resistance from Willie. “Let the past stay buried; let sleeping dogs lie,” is his attitude. But Margot persists, until the answers she finds show that things are rarely what they seem, and that an agonizing choice in 1939 has terrible consequences in the present.
Born in Germany, Hannah S. Hess came to the United States via Ecuador. She was educated in the New York City public schools, and worked as a high school English teacher, assistant principal and principal there. The mother of three children, she lives in New York with her husband, Walter, a published poet and film-maker. She is the author of The Third Side of the Desk; How Parents Can Change the Schools (Scribner, 1973) and HONEST DECEPTIONS (Caravel Books, 2013).
William Lashner –
Honest Deceptions is an utterly compelling story of wartime lies and their brutal resonance through time. Hannah Hess has skillfully drawn convincing portraits of a Germany under the heel of Nazism and then, twenty years later, deep in the pit self-induced amnesia over its past. Both highly readable and chillingly credible, Honest Deceptions is the best kind of novel, nourishing and fast and not to be missed