Cover image for After Dachau : a novel
After Dachau : a novel
Quinn, Daniel.
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Publication Information:
New York : Context Books, [2001]

Physical Description:
230 pages ; 22 cm
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In a powerful novel of reincarnation and a deadly alternate future, the bestselling author of Ishmael explores alternative realities within the mainstream, in this case a dystopian future in which Hitler has won World War II and all non-Aryans have been eliminated.

Author Notes

Daniel Quinn was born in 1935 and raised in Omaha, Nebraska. He graduated from Creighton Prep and attended St. Louis University, the University of Vienna and Loyola University of Chicago.

Quinn worked in educational and consumer publishing, holding editorial positions with the American Peoples Encyclopedia, the Greater Cleveland Mathematics Program, the Encyclopedia Britannica Educational Corporation, Fuller and Dees Publishing and the Society for Visual Education.

He is best known for his award-winning novel Ishmael (1992), which is about a gorilla able to telepathically communicate, but he has written other novels as well as short fiction.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Quinn, author of Ishmael (1992), uses fiction as a vehicle for his provocative yet frustratingly reductive philosophy. This quickly absorbed story begins entertainingly enough with the introduction of Jason Tull Jr., the unambitious, vaguely apologetic son of exceedingly wealthy parents. Jason has surprised everyone, perhaps even himself, by becoming involved with a creaky little organization devoted to the study of reincarnation. This quest brings him to the bedside of a young blonde, blue-eyed librarian in Oneonta, New York, named Mallory, who wakes up from a coma with an entirely new consciousness housed in her body. Angry and aggressive, this reincarnated soul identifies herself as Gloria, an African American painter whose memories of her time clash bewilderingly with what Jason's been taught. To reveal more will ruin the surprise. Once the plot twist occurs, the pleasing storyteller recedes, and the overbearing lecturer takes over, but Quinn's loyal readership seems not to mind his preachiness. --Donna Seaman

Publisher's Weekly Review

From the author of the bestselling novel Ishmael, 1992 winner of the highly controversial $500,000 Turner Tomorrow Fellowship, comes this absorbing cautionary tale imagining a homogenous future society. In 1992 A.D., when the narrator, Jason Tull Jr., the dilettante scion of a famous, incredibly wealthy family, graduates from college, he decides to work for We Live Again, an underfunded foundation dedicated to tracking down and authenticating reported instances of reincarnation. After 10 years and hundreds of dead-end investigations, Jason encounters the case of Mallory Hastings, a 28-year-old librarian from Oneonta, N.Y., who, following a minor car wreck, regains consciousness as a deaf mute. Hoping he has finally stumbled onto the elusive "Golden Case," Jason gains Mallory's confidence. He is ill-prepared, however, to cope with the enormity of his discovery: the person now occupying Mallory's body is Gloria MacArthur, a Manhattan artist born in 1922 A.D. But this is only a hint of a dark, complex conundrum, for the "new" Mallory has scarcely learned to talk when she realizes that Jason's A.D. is not the Christian anno Domini. Quinn's provocative, Orwellian tale imagines that Adolf Hitler beat the Allies to the A-bomb in 1944 and set in place a chilling plan to achieve a world of Aryan perfection. In Mallory/Gloria's brave new world, 2002 years have passed "after Dachau," the chilling A.D. of the title. (Feb.) Forecast: Since the publication of Ishmael and its two companion volumes, My Ishmael and The Story of B, Quinn has gained a cult following. The added intrigue of a revisionist, Nazi-dominated history will likely rally fans, and Context's vigorous promotional plans, including a 20-city reading tour in March to support a 30,000-copy first printing, may extend Quinn's reach. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

This disappointing, poorly conceived new fantasy novel mixes reincarnation, sf, Abstract Expressionism, and the Holocaust. The plot will be familiar to readers who know Quinn's most popular novel, Ishmael, the story of a telepathic gorilla and the dark secrets he reveals about man's conquest of nature. In After Dachau, the year is 4000 C.E., and a dark secret about human history is once again revealed, this time related to genocide. The Aryans have systematically exterminated every other race, and they have somehow been able to conceal the truth about this horror from the masses. Although Quinn's work in Ishmael and elsewhere suggests that he has had interesting and important things to say, this is not his best work. The plotting and characterization are very weak, and Quinn's observations about racism and bigotry, which might have redeemed the novel's other weaknesses, are, unfortunately, superficial and uninspiring. Not recommended. Patrick Sullivan, Manchester Community Coll., CT (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.