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The Books Interview: Maxim Leo

By Jonathan Derbyshire  

 Maxim Leo’s memoir “Red Love: The Story of an East German Family”, his account of growing up in East Berlin behind the Iron Curtain, was published in his native language in 2009. In 2011, it won the European Book Prize, with the chair of the jury, Julian Barnes, describing it as an “unofficial history for a country that no longer exists”. For Leo’s maternal grandfather Gerhard, a Berlin-born Jew and veteran of the French Resistance during the Second World War, the German Democractic Republic was a bulwark against fascism…

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