The Losing Role
In the last winter of WWII a failed German actor, Max Kaspar, is forced to join an absurdly desperate secret mission in which he must impersonate an enemy American officer. So Max cooks up his own fanatical plan -- he'll use his false identity to escape tyranny and war and flee to the America he'd once abandoned. Max the performer is hardly a soldier let alone a double-crossing commando, yet in the deadly Battle of the Bulge he has to fool battle-shocked American GIs as well as dodge discovery by his reckless German comrades. Belgium's Ardennes forest becomes a snowbound hell and the magical America he'd loved is lost to him, replaced by a somber invading juggernaut. In the end, Max's gambles will lead him to a grim but honest payoff. Part espionage thriller, part expatriate noir and the first in a series, The Losing Role is based on an actual false flag operation that's been made infamous in legend but in reality was a doomed farce. In all the tragic details and with some dark humor, this is the story of an aspiring talent who got in over his head and tried to break free.
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