Ordinary Heroes

Ordinary Heroes

Book - 2005
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Stewart Dubinsky knew his father had served in World War II. And he'd been told how David Dubin (as his father had Americanized the name that Stewart later reclaimed) had rescued Stewart's mother from the horror of the Balingen concentration camp. But when he discovers, after his father's death, a packet of wartime letters to a former fiancée, and learns of his father's court-martial and imprisonment, he is plunged into the mystery of his family's secret history and driven to uncover the truth about this enigmatic, distant man who'd always refused to talk about his war.

As he pieces together his father's past through military archives, letters, and, finally, notes from a memoir his father wrote while in prison, secretly preserved by the officer who defended him, Stewart starts to assemble a dramatic and baffling chain of events. He learns how Dubin, a JAG lawyer attached to Patton's Third Army and desperate for combat experience, got more than he bargained for when he was ordered to arrest Robert Martin, a wayward OSS officer who, despite his spectacular bravery with the French Resistance, appeared to be acting on orders other than his commanders'. In pursuit of Martin, Dubin and his sergeant are parachuted into Bastogne just as the Battle of the Bulge reaches its apex. Pressed into the leadership of a desperately depleted rifle company, the men are forced to abandon their quest for Martin and his fiery, maddeningly elusive comrade, Gita, as they fight for their lives through carnage and chaos the likes of which Dubin could never have imagined.

In reconstructing the terrible events and agonizing choices his father faced on the battlefield, in the courtroom, and in love, Stewart gains a closer understanding of his past, of his father's character, and of the brutal nature of war itself.

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux,� 2005
ISBN: 9780374184216
Branch Call Number: AF TURO


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Feb 27, 2019

Certainly this book is a departure for Scott Turow, but it is one of the best books I have read in a long time.

A wonderfully crafted story weaving some details from lives of real WWII American vets with some evocative and challenging plot lines. Who are the 'good guys'. This is the kind of novel which skirts the moral grey zone and draws the reader into an assessment of their own values and ideas of right and wrong. Turow quotes a friend of his own father's a few times in the book "Time does deepen the wonder". Ordinary Heroes gave me an insight into the suffering of my own father who came back fro WWII so scathed. Another chance to forgive our parents and to deepen the wonder at man's inhumanity to man.

Oct 13, 2015

Believable fiction

Jan 16, 2015

This would make a good movie, but as a book I found it a bit hard-going. Stewart Dubinsky is a journalist who, after reading letters written by his father during WWII referring to his court-martial that Stewart never knew about, investigates his father's war career. The following story takes place during the last phase of the European advances by the Allies, and is the best part of the book. I found the actual historical commentary of the battles and the strategies a bit dry compared to the father's story, but that may have been on purpose as it highlighted the human cost of participation in those battles. Of course there was also the depiction of upper management incompetence and need-to-know secrecy and its impact on the actual on-the-ground rank and file we have come to expect in this kind of story. Others have loved this book but I only liked it.

Jul 06, 2013

Although it's not his familiar courtroom setting, this is a spectacular book. I loved it

Jun 04, 2013

This is a great read! It's what they call a "sweeping saga." It reminds me of Dr. Zhivago in that it is a romance with the backdrop of war (WWII). It's also somewhat of a mystery and an adventure. This would make a spectacular movie! I can't recommend it enough!

May 04, 2010

This is a different Turow: war story well presented in all the horrors of war,

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