I am not too terribly well versed in crime fiction, being fairly new to the genre, so I was hoping some people that know more might be able to help me find some interesting books. I have long been interested in the history of Eastern Bloc countries, especially the GDR, and I was wondering if anyone knows of crime fiction set in these countries. I have read a number of James Church's novels dealing with police work in the DPRK and found them to be very interesting, so I would love to discover some more novels like these.

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Philip Kerr.

Tom Rob Smith's CHILD 44 trilogy set in Moscow is EXCELLENT.

Thanks for this suggestion, I'll have to see if I can find a copy at the library and see how I feel about it. Definitely interested in the Stalinist period.

You're most welcome - I'm sure you'll enjoy it. Tom's debut novel and my first came out the same year (2008). Mine was *almost* nominated for a Thriller Award from the International Thriller Writers in the debut novel category - one of the judges told me after the presentation that mine came in as a "close number 6" out of 5 nominees - but nominated or not, it wouldn't have mattered. Tom's CHILD 44 blew everyone away, and of course, it took top honors. I'm pretty sure it's also being made into a film.

According to the Wikipedia article it is being made into a film. Filming began in June 2013 and they expect it to be released in 2014. As I only started reading thrillers and crime fiction in the last year or so I had not heard about this, but I see it has been highly praised since its release. Hopefully it will get my creative juices flowing a bit. I have been reading a lot of non-fiction about the USSR and Eastern Bloc lately, trying to get ideas for a game I would like to make at some point in the near future. But I find reading fictional works help me more in the mindset of developing an actual story.

Very interesting, and good luck with your project!

I hated CHILD 44!  Thought it was poorly written and structured, and too sensationalist for my taste.

Gorky Park, by Martin Cruz Smith?  A good book and a fine film in my opinion.

Good.  I thought I posted about the same book earlier. The whole series is excellent, but GORKY PARK is probably the best.

Stefan Heym's 'The Architects' may not be classic crime fiction but as an insight into life on the other side of the Berlin Wall and the intrusion of the state into everyday life, it's unique.

Thanks for alerting me to this author. I had not heard of them before but I think they sound very interesting. I will have to pick up a couple of their books and read through them.

I hope you enjoy his work.  By the way, if you haven't reda them, for non-fiction background, do try and get a copy of John R Koelhler's "Stasi" (Westview, 1999) and Frederick Taylor's "The Berlin Wall" (don't know the US publisher). Anna Funder's "Stasiland" is worth checking out as well.  if you ever get the chance, the Stasi Museum on Magdalenenstrasse in Berlin (housed in the old Stasi HQ) is a fascinating though small space (and almost entirely in German).  It's far better than the more sanitized GDR museum in the centre. 


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