Olympic Affair: A Novel of Hitler's Siren and America's Hero
Though not a member of the National Socialist Party, Leni Riefenstahl was the filmmaker darling of the Nazis and Adolf Hitler. First a successful dancer and actress in Germany, she became more notorious when she produced and directed Victory of Faith and Triumph of the Will, the chilling documentaries about Nazi Party Congresses at Nuremberg.
Glenn Morris was an All-American farm boy from tiny Simla, Colorado, as well as a former college football star and student body president at the school now known as Colorado State University. At the 1936 Olympics, he won the decathlon, earning him the label “the world’s greatest athlete.” Among the American heroes at the Berlin Games, he was considered second only to Jesse Owens, who won four gold medals.
Riefenstahl and Morris: An unlikely couple? Perhaps, but in her 1987 memoirs, the German filmmaker belatedly confirmed she had an affair with the American athlete during the filming of Olympia, Riefenstahl’s documentary about the Berlin Games. In fact, she portrayed it as much more than a dalliance, saying that she had dreamed of marrying Morris and that he broke her heart. Morris, who went on to Hollywood, the National Football League, and military service, spoke sparingly of the relationship, but mused late in life that he “should have stayed in Germany with Leni.”
In Olympic Affair, author Terry Frei turns to historical fiction in a novel researched in much the same fashion as his widely praised works of nonfiction, including Horns, Hogs, and Nixon Coming and Third Down and a War to Go. Using deduction, imagination and narrative skill to augment documented fact (as well as debunk myths parroted for many years), Frei tells the story of their ill-fated affair . . . and beyond.
Read the first chapter of Olympic Affair here.
What people are saying - Write a review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Shuffy2 - LibraryThing
Nazi filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl and US Olympic hopeful Glenn Morris meet at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, Germany. With tensions on the rise between the two countries, can love blind them to world ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - etxgardener - LibraryThing
The non-fiction book written as a novel has become very popular ever since the success of Devil in the White City and author Terry Frei has apparently written several sports oriented books in this ... Read full review
Chapter 21 Lenis Idea
Chapter 22 The Führers Box
Chapter 23 Vaulting into the Night
Chapter 24 Decathlon Day One
Chapter 25 Decathlon Day Two
Chapter 26 1500 Meters
Chapter 27 Glenns Gold
Chapter 28 Unwanted Company
Chapter 09 Queen of the Castle
Chapter 10 Zehnkampf Zehnkampf
Chapter 11 The First Looks
Chapter 12 Max Schmeling Center
Chapter 13 Sauerbraten Champagne
Chapter 14 The Blue Light
Chapter 15 Arent You Thomas Wolfe?
Chapter 16 Helpless American
Chapter 17 SOS Iceberg
Chapter 18 Opening Gambits
Chapter 19 High Jump High Drama
Chapter 20 Lenis Tantrum
Chapter 29 The Spirit of What Youre Saying
Chapter 30 On Tour
Chapter 31 Glenn Meet Eva
Chapter 32 Leni and Glenn
Chapter 33 Triumph of the Will
Chapter 34 Homecoming and Hollywood
Chapter 35 Olympia USA