Hitler's Master of the Dark Arts

Hitler's Master of the Dark Arts

Himmler's Black Knights and the Occult Origins of the SS

Book - 2010
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Grand Central Pub

At the heart of the evil of Nazism was Hitler&;s &;witch doctor,&; Heinrich Himmler, and his peculiar and deadly organization with the mundane name Schutzstaffel, literally &;protective squadron.&; Undoubtedly you know them better as the feared SS, the very essence of Nazism. Their threatening double lightning bolt is perhaps the most dreaded symbol of the Third Reich.

The facts of the SS&;s origins are truly stranger than fiction. If you thought Raiders of the Lost Ark was an inspired Hollywood fiction, think again. Hitler's Master of the Dark Arts reveals the hidden &;truths&; of the SS in full and morbidly fascinating detail.



Book News
Yenne, novelist and historical author provides what is said to be the first history of Adolph Hitler's SS and its leader, Heinrich Himmler, to concentrate on the mystical and cult elements of the unusual and dreaded Nazi organization. The author follows Himmler as he rose through the ranks to his leadership of the SS in 1930 and his increasing power in the Third Reich in the 1940s. The author points out that while Himmler's dedication to the occult and a variety of oddball theories and beliefs would have been considered ludicrous, they were used as justification for Hitler's Final Solution. Annotation ©2011 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Mbi Pub Co

At the heart of the evil of Nazism was Hitler’s “witch doctor,” Heinrich Himmler, and his peculiar and deadly organization with the mundane name Schutzstaffel, literally “protective squadron.” Undoubtedly you know them better as the feared SS, the very essence of Nazism. Their threatening double lightning bolt is perhaps the most dreaded symbol of the Third Reich.

The facts of the SS’s origins are truly stranger than fiction. If you thought Raiders of the Lost Ark was an inspired Hollywood fiction, think again. Hitler's Master of the Dark Arts reveals the hidden “truths” of the SS in full and morbidly fascinating detail.



Publisher: Minneapolis : Zenith Press, 2010.
ISBN: 9780760337783
Branch Call Number: 943.086 Y45h
Characteristics: 312 p. : ill. (some col.) ; 24 cm.

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jgariepy
Aug 12, 2014

I picked up Bill Yenne's book at my local library, hoping for an interesting exploration of the life of Heinrich Himmler. I had beforehand looked up the author's credentials on the Internet and had been impressed by his collection of works on a variety of often disparate subjects ranging from Julius Caesar to Lewis and Clark to the story of the B-52, the Stratofortress. I was swayed to give this particular book a try since Mr. Yenne had apparently contributed to encyclopedias of both World Wars. Having previously read "The Occult Roots of Nazism" by Nicholas Goodrick-Clarke, I was looking forward to a more legible, not-so-dry treatment of the subject. "Hitler's Master of the Dark Arts" was certainly un-academic in its approach as I was to find out. I have nothing against non-historians writing on historical subjects. As a matter of fact, I much prefer their works because they often present details that would otherwise not be included in "academic" works done by university professors such as Mr. Goodrick-Clarke. Mr. Yenne's book, unfortunately, turned out to be a disappointment. There were few, if any, facts or details that hadn't been mentioned before in other works on the topic of Himmler and his occult fascination. My greatest problem with Mr. Yenne's book was the seeming absence of any editing/proof-reading: there are so many grammar and spelling mistakes that it would take several pages to list them all. Mr. Yenne also has a tendency, in this book at least, to latch on to certain words and expressions - often in the same paragraph and sentence even - to the point where this habit of his becomes distracting and, frankly, irritating. (Answer quickly: what was the "most feared address in Europe" in the 1930s to mid 1940's? Answer is at the end.). I would be more forgiving of this idiosyncrasy if it weren't for the total of lack of footnotes. The text contains expressions such as "some say..." and "others say...", for example, without any mention of where the information comes from. Another reviewer here has complained about Mr. Yenne making a parallel between pre-WWII occult/mystic movements to the New Age of the 1960s and 1970s. I find this analogy quite inappropriate and well, silly. A better comparison might have been the spiritualism/spiritism of the 19th and early 20th centuries. I was also somewhat annoyed with Mr. Yenne's frequent references to Indiana Jones. Perhaps this is because I was very familiar with the stories of the Ahnenerbe way before Indiana Jones came to the Big Screen. Mr. Yenne also seems to relish using German ranks, titles and organization names followed by their English translation in parentheses. Nothing wrong with that except that he does it all the time. I guess it's a convenient way of bulking the text without adding anything new.

The above criticisms do not mean that this book is not worth reading. It just means that the reader should be prepared to be slightly annoyed almost the whole he reads the book, especially for a person who has not read anything on the subject of Himmler and Nazi occultism.

Answer: No. 8, Prinz-Albrechtstrasse.

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