Meeting the Enemy

Meeting the Enemy – ISBN# 1-891400-70-3
by Arthur Rathburn

Background: The author met Erich, the subject of this book, in the 1960s in Germany. Erich and he spent many hours together talking about Erich’s experiences during WW II. It wasn’t until after Erich had died that Dr. Rathburn decided to share his story through the book he titled, Meeting The Enemy. Since Erich was not available to fill in certain missing parts of the story, Dr. Rathburn sought out other individuals that had similar experiences. He used information from interviews with these individuals to expand on Erich’s story in order to better inform readers of the actual history and consequences of it.

Style: The book, though based on a true story, is written in the format of a novel. It is written in first voice, so that the reader is told the story by Erich himself. This required the author to take on the persona of Erich. A difficult task, but one carried out to the point that many readers have actually assumed that Erich took part in the writing.

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Readers critiques and comments:

“Art, having read all of your books with great interest and enjoyment, I still believe that Meeting The Enemy was your best. Once I started to read it I could not put it down.”
Personal E-mail from Richard Berry, Madison, WI

“An untold story that needed telling. As one who lived it, I can truly say that Meeting The Enemy is an excellent portrait of how we German soldiers lived as prisoners of war.”
Manfred Donath – former German POW 1944-1946

“This novel is an example of what mankind should learn for the future. War as a method to solve problems has outlived its time. As a friend and former colleague of Erich I am impressed at how well Dr. Rathburn captured the essence of the man and his time in history.”
Personal E-mail from Horst Bill – (retired teacher, trainer and school director)

“In Meeting The Enemy Arthur Rathburn combines excellent descriptions with his sharp eye, ear, and memory for military detail, and interpersonal relationships to present a captivating true story…”
Gerald E. Chappell (co-author of Corpsmen: Letters from Korea)

“…a friend and colleague was so impressed with Meeting The Enemy, that he went to B. Dalton Books and purchased a copy before he returned mine. You treat your friends that you write about with respect”
Marsh Guerra (California reader, via e-mail to author)

“Meeting The Enemy was a powerful story giving us a memorial look at what it is like for those on the other side, the real people behind the propaganda posters, the ethnic slurs, and war films.”
Lawrance M. Bernabo (reviewer The Zenth City, Duluth, Minnesota – as seen on

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As writer, editor, and publisher Art has free rein to do what he wants.

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