Hermine: an Empress in Exile by Moniek Bloks

 This is an interesting book, but the writing is a bit dry. The author tries to be sympathetic and fair to Hermine, the second wife of the former Kaiser, but Hermine really didn't do herself any favours, and one can see why she was unloved, although the Kaiser's children would have probably been against any match.  Much younger, ambitious and clever, Hermine, a widow with several children of her own, married the E,mporer quite quickly. It was love at first sight on his part, but who knows what it was on hers. Some of the Kaiser's children thought that she was a gold-digger, and she certainly went to great pains to try to get his throne restored in Germany. 

Stuck in Doorn in Holland most of the time because the Kaiser wasn't allowed to travel very far, Hermine grew quite restless. She tended to be argumentative and bored. The main reason why she is an unsympathetic character, however, is because she was so mesmerised by Hitler and the Nazis. She liked Hitler, and she was very anxious that he would put William back on the throne.. This was understandable in the first place perhaps, but she continued to be impressed with the Nazis and try to court their attention,even after her husband advised her against having anything to do with them. However, she eventually saw the light, and she knew that her neighbour was hiding a Jewish person from the Nazis during the war.

I have no time for the Kaiser either, but he seems to have been a more likeable character than his second wife.

I received this free ebook from NetGalley in return for an honest review.


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