by Ellie Midwood
Publication Date: January 31, 2020
Paperback & eBook; 238 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Weimar Berlin, 1924
Unemployed actors, profiteers, cabaret girls, and impoverished aristocracy – out of this wild set of characters populating Weimar Berlin, Margarete Gräfin von Steinhoff belongs to the latter category. Having lost everything due to hyper-inflation, she considers jumping into the freezing waters of the Spree rather than facing the humiliating existence shared by millions of her fellow Germans. However, a chance meeting makes her change her mind at the last moment and offers her a chance to rely on the help of the metropolis itself, where anything can be sold and bought for money and where connections are everything. The bustling nightlife of cosmopolitan Berlin, with its casinos and dance halls, brings good income for the ones who don’t burden themselves too heavily with morals.
After a New Year’s Eve party, Margot finally meets her ever-absent and mysterious neighbor, Paul Schneider, who makes a living by producing a certain type of film for his rich clientele. Under his guidance, Margot discovers a new passion of hers – photography and soon, her talents are noticed by the prominent newspaper, Berliner Tageblatt itself. But being an official photographer of the most celebrated events of the La Scala and most famous Berlin theaters no longer satisfies Margot’s ambitions. As soon as the chance presents itself for her to get involved with the cinematography on the set of “Metropolis” – the film with the highest budget ever produced by the UFA – Margot jumps at it, without thinking twice. At the same time, Paul becomes involved with a rival project, “The Holy Mountain,” which stars an as yet unknown actress and an emerging director in, Leni Riefenstahl. As the two women meet, professional rivalry soon turns into a true friendship, fueled by their passion for cinematography. However, due to the economic woes facing Germany, both projects soon run out of money and now, both film crews must go to extreme lengths to save their respective productions.
Set against the backdrop of a decadent, vibrant, and fascinatingly liberal Weimar Berlin, “Metropolis” is a novel of survival, self-discovery, and self-sacrifice, in the name of art, love, and friendship.
About the Author
Ellie Midwood is a USA Today bestselling and award-winning historical fiction author. She owes her interest in the history of the Second World War to her grandfather, Junior Sergeant in the 2nd Guards Tank Army of the First Belorussian Front, who began telling her about his experiences on the frontline when she was a young girl. Growing up, her interest in history only deepened and transformed from reading about the war to writing about it. After obtaining her BA in Linguistics, Ellie decided to make writing her full-time career and began working on her first full-length historical novel, “The Girl from Berlin.” Ellie is continuously enriching her library with new research material and feeds her passion for WWII and Holocaust history by collecting rare memorabilia and documents.
In her free time, Ellie is a health-obsessed yoga enthusiast, neat freak, adventurer, Nazi Germany history expert, polyglot, philosopher, a proud Jew, and a doggie mama. Ellie lives in New York with her fiancé and their Chihuahua named Shark Bait.
I think Ellie Midwood is fast becoming one of my favorite authors. It takes someone special to base stories in a dark period of history, yet manage to write stories that feature hope and optimism, even when everything around the characters is going to hell. Hope, love, perseverance are themes that are seen in her books, and she has a unique voice and style that makes you really and truly love it and root for it. When you’re reading something based in pre-WWII (or during and even post WWII), you’re expecting to read about the ups and downs, the darkness, the worsening news. Stories like Metropolis are a change of pace–a most refreshing pace. The synopsis seems a touch contrary to what I’m saying, I know, but trust me on this.
The intro features someone wanting to jump from a bridge (!) but instead, they end up at a coffee shop, and from there…our tale begins. It’s not a long read, just under 300 pages, but I suggest taking your time because it’s a really good read and you’ll want to savor it–much like a good coffee.
I’m kind of known for remarking upon an author who knows their history–and Ms. Midwood surely does! The world comes along in stunning realism, not shying away from anything. I love that.
I am intrigued by this time period and by all the history there..I can’t wait to see what Ms. Midwood comes out with next!
Blog Tour Schedule
Tuesday, February 4
Feature at Comet Readings
Wednesday, February 5
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books
Friday, February 7
Review at A Chick Who Reads
Saturday, February 8
Excerpt at Robin Loves Reading
Thursday, February 13
Review & Guest Post at Tales from the Book Dragon
Sunday, February 16
Review at Reading is My Remedy
Monday, February 17
Review at Nurse Bookie
Wednesday, February 19
Review at Historical Graffiti
Thursday, February 20
Review at Books In Their Natural Habitat
During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a paperback copy of Metropolis! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.
– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on February 21st. You must be 18 or older to enter.
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– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.