Ordinary Heroes: A Novel

Scott Turow
Stewart Dubinsky knew his father had served in World War II. And he'd been told how David Dubin (as his father had Americanized the name that Stewart later reclaimed) had rescued Stewart's mother from the horror of the Balingen concentration camp. But when he discovers, after his father's death, a packet of wartime letters to a former fiancée, and learns of his father's court-martial and imprisonment, he is plunged into the mystery of his family's secret history and driven to uncover the truth about this enigmatic, distant man who'd always refused to talk about his war.As he pieces together his father's past through military archives, letters, and, finally, notes from a memoir his father wrote while in prison, secretly preserved by the officer who defended him, Stewart starts to assemble a dramatic and baffling chain of events. He learns how Dubin, a JAG lawyer attached to Patton's Third Army and desperate for combat experience, got more than he bargained for when he was ordered to arrest Robert Martin, a wayward OSS officer who, despite his spectacular bravery with the French Resistance, appeared to be acting on orders other than his commanders'. In pursuit of Martin, Dubin and his sergeant are parachuted into Bastogne just as the Battle of the Bulge reaches its apex. Pressed into the leadership of a desperately depleted rifle company, the men are forced to abandon their quest for Martin and his fiery, maddeningly elusive comrade, Gita, as they fight for their lives through carnage and chaos the likes of which Dubin could never have imagined.In reconstructing the terrible events and agonizing choices his father faced on the battlefield, in the courtroom, and in love, Stewart gains a closer understanding of his past, of his father's character, and of the brutal nature of war itself.


Reviewed: 2021-11-08

This fictitious novel begins with Stewart Dubinski as an investigative reporter. He is the son of David Dubin, whose Jewish parent emigrated from Russia to the United States and changed their name. After his father’s death, Stewart discovers his father was in World War II. His research takes him into his father’s WWII activities as a non-combatant lawyer in the U.S Army Justice Adjutant General’s Department (JAG). The father, Lt. David Dubin, is sent to Europe in 1944 and on arrival is assigned to arrest Major Martin, an intelligence officer of the Office of Secret Service (OSS). Major Martin is a hero and active underground agent in France working with the French Resistance to undermine and destroy many German communications during the occupation. Lt. David Dubin is a conscientious lawyer and in his search for the truth gets drawn into action in the destruction of a German depot behind enemy lines with Major Martin who, after the action, disappears. Eventully, newly promoted Captain David Dubin, still in pursuit of the Major, is parachuted into Bastogne, France and is drafted to become an infantry company commander in December 1944 during the Battle of the Bulge. In this battle, the German counter offensive decimated American forces in the forest of Ardennes. His heroism and leadership in this battle over Christmas are diminished when he later arrests Major Martin but allows him to escape and is court-martialed. An intriguing story of romance and war that exposes the mindset of soldiers in action together with many descriptive accounts of intense action, injuries, and the horrific discovery of a concentration camp. I found this an intriguing book that was difficult to put down. - Edgar W. Fentum

Although this story is set in World War II, I enjoyed reading this tale because of my military service time, smokejumper fire-fighting time, and knowing interesting and exciting women and men from all of these special times.

The story is fast-paced, an easy read, and leads you on to the next characters while providing much detail on each location and action scene. -Bruce Rick

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@mgpence completed #ordinaryheroesan... on 2015-06-01