Listen free for 30 days

  • Aftermath

  • Life in the Fallout of the Third Reich
  • By: Harald Jähner
  • Narrated by: Sam Peter Jackson
  • Length: 11 hrs and 42 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (107 ratings)

Pick 1 audiobook a month from our unmatched collection - including bestsellers and new releases.
Listen all you want to thousands of included audiobooks, Originals, celeb exclusives, and podcasts.
Access exclusive sales and deals.
£7.99/month after 30 days. Renews automatically. See here for eligibility.
Aftermath cover art

Aftermath

By: Harald Jähner
Narrated by: Sam Peter Jackson
Try for £0.00

£7.99/month after 30 days. Renews automatically. See here for eligibility.

Buy Now for £12.99

Buy Now for £12.99

Pay using card ending in
By completing your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and authorise Audible to charge your designated card or any other card on file. Please see our Privacy Notice, Cookies Notice and Interest-based Ads Notice.

Listeners also enjoyed...

Postcards from Absurdistan cover art
The Weimar Years cover art
Britain's War cover art
The Last Train cover art
Rorke's Drift cover art
A Certain Idea of France cover art
The Third Reich at War cover art
Battles of Conscience cover art
First They Killed My Father cover art
The German Wife cover art
Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World cover art
The Soviet Century cover art
The World of Yesterday cover art
Cuba (Winner of the Pulitzer Prize) cover art
Open Veins of Latin America cover art
Israel cover art

Summary

Brought to you by Penguin.

Shortlisted for the Baillie Gifford Prize 2021.

Germany, 1945: a country in ruins. Cities have been reduced to rubble and more than half of the population are where they do not belong or do not want to be. How can a functioning society ever emerge from this chaos?

In bombed-out Berlin, Ruth Andreas-Friedrich, journalist and member of the Nazi resistance, warms herself by a makeshift stove and records in her diary how a frenzy of expectation and industriousness grips the city. The Americans send Hans Habe, an Austro-Hungarian Jewish journalist and US army soldier, to the frontline of psychological warfare - tasked with establishing a newspaper empire capable of remoulding the minds of the Germans. The philosopher Hannah Arendt returns to the country she fled to find a population gripped by a manic loquaciousness, but faces a deafening wall of silence at the mention of the Holocaust.

Aftermath is a nuanced panorama of a nation undergoing monumental change. 1945 to 1955 was a raw, wild decade poised between two eras that proved decisive for Germany's future - and one starkly different to how most of us imagine it today. Aftermath evokes an immersive portrait of a society corrupted, demoralised and freed - all at the same time.

©2021 Harald Jähner (P)2021 Penguin Audio
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

Critic reviews

"Magisterial, fascinating, humane - a brilliant book of the greatest importance and achievement." (Philippe Sands)

"Absolutely extraordinary. Every page stops you dead with insight and revelation." (James Hawes)

"For those who want to understand the Germans, Aftermath is essential reading. Anyone with even the slightest interest in history and the human condition should read this book." (Julia Boyd)

What listeners say about Aftermath

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    69
  • 4 Stars
    25
  • 3 Stars
    8
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    3
Performance
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    55
  • 4 Stars
    20
  • 3 Stars
    7
  • 2 Stars
    5
  • 1 Stars
    6
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    58
  • 4 Stars
    23
  • 3 Stars
    7
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    2

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Appalling delivery

I was so so disappointed with the production on this audiobook.

The voice was so utterly robotic and monotonous I could not get further than the first couple of chapters. I am incredibly cross that I cannot return this book. For some reason audible seems to have stopped making that possible if you are disappointed with the book.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Important story poorly narrated

This is a well researched and important piece of history. Great store has been placed in ensuring accurate German pronunciation. The narrator is clearly fluent in German.

However, as the story unfolded it became distracting and gratingly pedantic that while he could rattle off names, words and places in flawless German he struggled with English. Words like consequently and hierarchy were distorted and, near the end, a complete misreading: ‘popular’ opposite (surely polar?). I’d have been happier with a more melodious and less technocratic voice in anglicised German. It’d have been easier to listen to. Great to tell a serious story in a serious manner, but the serious intent was undermined: perfect German sat awkwardly with imperfect English. It definitely lost something for me in it’s delivery.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Open Goal Missed - Pretentious!

If there was more content and less of the pretentious metaphor, this would have been a fascinating book. Unfortunately I gave up after only a few chapters as there were only so many ways I could cope with the author repeatedly describing cliches of hope and starting anew, in using ever more creative metaphors.

Totally patronises it’s reader and felt like a sandwich you get at a service station. You’re starving, it looks perfect, you pay too much for it, only to find a tiny bit of meat and nothing else but bread. That sums up this book.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Fascinating

I loved this book on so many levels - it helped me understand what happened in the years after the war from a social viewpoint, as i had often wondered how on earth does a society that broken managed to not only survive, but rebuild so quickly. I didn't want it to end!

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Superb

Educational even for someone with knowledge of this period. Thought provoking especially now ......

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Germany culture and conscience, explained

shines a new light with original research to get behind the Nazi project, this book examines in great detail, the fall of the Nazis. It looks at the role of the both individual Germans and the collective calibration (and denial) in the aftermath of defeat. The reader is excellent but I slowed the pace down to 0.95 to allow it flow better. the sentences are cut too tight without the necessary pause, but setting the rate a bit slower sorted this. A very important and must read book. Highly recommended!

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • K
  • 09-01-24

Absolutely brilliant

A fascinating read that brilliantly answered all the questions I’ve had on post-war Germany and could never find the answers to. I am finally a little more enlightened as to the hush/lack of discussion on how Germans felt and acted at the fall of the Third Reich, which I’ve pondered for years. Well written, fascinating throughout.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Awful narration and poorly structured.

Just to repeat the heading, this book is a poorly written account of Germany 1945 and after. I’m not challenging the facts, just the style and structure. As for the narrator, awful! I trust he read it for free. Not wasting any more words.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great listen

Great narration and really different perspective than most I've read on post war. Very interesting.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant

A great and indebted telling of what happened to Germany that has never been told.

Something went wrong. Please try again in a few minutes.

You voted on this review!

You reported this review!