Book Review: The Black Eagle Inn by Christoph Fischer
Third in the Three Nations Trilogy, The Black Eagle Inn by Christoph Fischer follows the lives of the Hinterberger family from just after WWI up until the 1980’s. The family owns a large farm with a restaurant and inn, The Black Eagle Inn, on the outskirts the small village of Heimkerchen in Bavaria. Anna was the most ambitious and ruthless of her siblings and worked to inherit the family business. Manipulative and strong willed Anna bullied her siblings and chased away those who most threatened her claim to the family businesses.
This book chronicles the lives of Anna, her siblings, their children and to some extent grandchildren. At the beginning I thought there would be an end of the story much sooner in time, but, I was wrong and the story was more long term following the family through wars, economic hard times, the reconstruction of Germany after WWII, political leadership of the Christian Democrats after the war then the rise of the Social Democrats in the late 60’s and 70’s. The family is divided and at odds with each other as overly pious Catholic members; liberal thinking members; greed, betrayal and hatred; prejudices and political opposition all take their toll on the Hinterberger legacy.
As with the other two books in the Three Nations Trilogy, this book is about the lives of ordinary people in the historical setting of the 20th century world events and social changes. The latter part of the book began to bring back my own memories of events and social changes during my youth and young adulthood. Things happening in Europe were to some extent mirrored here in the US. The growing pains of society affect the lives of individuals. Christoph Fischer does an excellent job of portraying the lives of ordinary people during the growing pangs of a recovering nation. I can recommend The Three Nations trilogy to older youth and adults, though I think adults will enjoy it more.