Against the politically charged background of Nazi Germany's police state, Standartenführer Doctor Hagen Kohl is trying to carve out a profession for himself in the SS. A middle class intellectual with a doctorate in Literature, Hagen is a an investigator who hunts criminals within the party apparatus itself. Hagen justifies everything by his personal code and patriotism, unable to see the flaws of the regime he serves. When he is ordered to investigate members of the army, he discovers patriotism is entirely a matter of perspective. His eyes are further opened by exposure to Galiena von Steinberg; an aristocrat whose own experiences bring him into the entanglements and intrigues at the highest levels of Third Reich society.
1938. Germany is moving faster than Standartenführer Hagen Kohl thought possible. Sent down to Vienna to investigate a potential threat to Hitler’s plans for Austria, Hagen is drawn in to an aristocratic world he’s never encountered before. Without Hauptsturmführer Eugen Friesler at his side, Hagen is in more danger than he could have imagined as he hunts for a shadowy organization called the New Austrian Order. Back in Germany, Galiena von Steinberg returns to Riesa and the von Steinberg Gesellschaft, but taking over the reins of her Grandfather’s empire comes with many challenges. Can she protect her family holdings while keeping true to the new sense of self she has worked so hard to find?
Hagen nodded at his acquaintance, Standartenführer Heinrich ‘Gestapo’ Müller, as they passed on the walkway. Gestapo Müller and Hagen worked well together and were polite to one another, but there was always something between them. Hagen was a highly educated man; he held a doctorate in German literature. Müller was a former Munich vice detective who had worked his way up through the ranks before being brought into the SS by Reinhard Heydrich. Hagen was known to be ruthless, but Müller was a step beyond. Cold, calculating and completely without morality when it suited him, Müller’s penchant for physical brutality and torture were well known in the Gestapo. Müller thought nothing of beating a man to the edge of death to wring a confession from him, and Hagen could not look at Müller’s coarse hands without thinking he could see dried blood on the skin. It was that image which always leapt to Hagen’s mind whenever he saw the man. Blood crusted fingernails.
“Well, afternoon, Teufel! What brings you outside on this piss poor day?” Müller always called Hagen by his nickname, echoing their mutual master, Gruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich.
“Going to see the boss,” Hagen nodded, aware Müller would know which one.
“Lucky you,” Müller replied snidely. “But then you are the fair haired boy, aren’t you?”
Hagen cocked a brow at Müller. “Is that what they’re calling me?”
“Heydrich might have said it, yes, but then he is out of favour at the moment and he so hates competition,” Müller snorted derisively. “Watch yourself. The RF might like you, but you don’t want Heydrich to get jealous. He isn’t above making your life difficult.”
I’m often asked what my inspiration is, or why do I write what I write about. I find this a very tough question. When we are in a conversation with our peers, what makes us join in? What makes us decide that we have something to add to the group? What makes us decide that we have something to say?
Two of my closest friends aren’t talkers. Get them in their own and they will talk your ear off. Get them in a crowd and they keep things very close to their chest. I’ve never understood people who feel the need to hide their thoughts. That’s not a trait I’ve ever had. I’m loud and proud and out there. Get me in a conversation in real life and I will hold court like a renaissance monarch. Sometimes I talk too much. Did I just say that?
My writing is my way of entering a different conversation. In fact, it’s my way of starting a conversation. What inspires me to write is that I have a story to tell, and sometimes after you read it, there is going to be a quiz! I always want to know what the reader thinks.
When I was in high school, I used to hate literature classes, when the teacher would say, ‘what was the author’s message.’ I remember saying ‘what if there is no message.’ I’ve changed my mind on that. I think that when a writer writes, they always have a little something to say, even in the pulpiest of pulp fiction. Perhaps it isn’t a grand or esoteric theme; the onward struggle of good vrs. evil or true love conquers all is something in the end. Perhaps I’m naive about that. But they, why would you take the time to tell a story if it has no meaning for you?
I know there are some for whom writing is a job; and sometimes you can tell. I would like to hope that I never have the feeling that I have to churn out some pages because I need to pay my car insurance. I think that’s a disservice to the reader. I believe it helps when you love what you’re doing; but then that goes for so much of life.
So there are my 2¢ on how and why I do write. A story to tell, certainly. A message? Yes. There are a few themes in my work. The people you think of as ‘bad’ aren’t always so bad. People are very complex. People act in different ways from a wide variety of motivations. No one is a cartoon character. Situations are never as simple or black and white as we initially think of them. Check out my books! If you find another, let me know. In the end, what it all means is what it means to you. My work might take you in a totally different direction from what I intended originally, but then that’s half the fun!
LD Towers will be awarding a $40 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here
LD Towers travels the world like a rootless vagabond! A military historian, she searches out places of conflict to find a deeper insight to the things she writes about. Presently enjoying the warm weather and azure seas of Central America, she has lived all over Western Europe, including 5.5 years in the incomparable Berlin.
Primarily working in Historical and Military Fiction, LD sometimes sneaks in the odd Dystopian or Modern Thriller piece. Also look for a series of novellas about the despicable yet intriguing Meinrad von Steinberg from the Riesa Series, coming in fall 2015.
Amazon author page: http://www.amazon.com/LD-Towers/e/B00ZMFTJTQ