A German in a Foreign Land by Lucinda Heck
Message from the author:
“This is a fictional account of the history of my family after moving to the Banat. Four years ago I read interviews given by family members and learned about the genocide of the ethnic Germans in Central Europe after WWII by the Russians and Tito. I believed that this story had to be told to a larger audience. I decided to write a historical fiction book rather than a monograph or a history book to make it readily available to a large audience. The result of three years of service was the book A German in a Foreign Land. Their story is told through different narrators for each chapter. The events covered are their initial settlement in the Banat, the revolutions of 1848, the Great War, WWII, and their eventual genocide. One member of the family moved to Hungary to study violin with Haydn and eventually meets Beethoven. The SS Waffen Division Prinz Eugen is created in the Banat through orders of Hitler and overseen by Himmler. This Division is one of the most brutal of the war and brought up on war crimes. One member of the family escapes the genocide and makes her war to Berlin and meets a relative with whom she begins a new life.” — Lucinda Heck
Over three hundred years, the story of the family of Stefan Fritz begins its trek with a land grant from Maria Theresa for Germans to settle in the Banat area of Hungary. Through joys and hardships the family grows and members of the family settle in Vienna and Berlin. The family witnesses the revolutions in 1848, the Great War, and World War II. As musicians they meet Haydn, Beethoven, and Schubert. During The Great War one member is an officer on the Italian Front and another an enlisted soldier on the Western Front. In World War II members of the family enlist and are conscripted in an SS Division under Heinrich Himmler. After the war most of the family is destroyed by the genocide of ethnic German in Central Europe by the Russians and Tito. One member survives and escapes to Berlin.