Willi Heinrich

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Willi Heinrich
Born (1920-08-09)9 August 1920
Heidelberg, Baden-Württemberg
Died 12 July 2005(2005-07-12) (aged 84)
Karlsruhe, Germany
Allegiance  Nazi Germany
Years of service 1941–1945
Rank Oberschütze
Unit 1st Battalion, 228th Jäger Regiment, 101st Jäger Division
Battles/wars World War II
Awards Black Wound Badge
Other work author

Willi Heinrich (August 9, 1920 – July 12, 2005) was a German author.

Biography[edit]

Willi Heinrich was born in Heidelberg, Baden-Württemberg, and during the Second World War he fought the Russians in the Eastern Front with the 1st Battalion 228th Jäger Regiment of the 101st Jäger Division, the infantry unit of the characters of Das Geduldige Fleisch (The Willing Flesh; Cross of Iron), his most famous novel. In the war's course, the 101st Jäger Division suffered seven hundred per cent casualties; Heinrich was wounded five times.

After the war, Heinrich became a writer; his first novel, In einem Schloss zu wohnen, written 1950–1952, went unpublished until 1976, when he was an established novelist. His first commercial novel, Das Geduldige Fleisch (The Willing Flesh), was published in 1955, and almost immediately was translated to English and published as The Willing Flesh (1956), by Weidenfield & Nicolson in the U.K., and as Cross of Iron (1957), by Bobbs-Merrill in the U.S. To date, the novel remains in print and in many editions; in 1977, Sam Peckinpah cinematically adapted it as Cross of Iron, featuring James Coburn as the protagonist anti-hero Rolf Steiner.

Though he began as a war genre novelist, Heinrich concentrated in the potboiler genre of soapy, sexy stories that were very popular in the 1970s and 1980s. Most of his books are novels, but Erzählungen (1985) is an anthology comprising three novellas: (i) Die Freundinnen, (ii) Fata Morgana, and (iii) Harte Bandagen. His last book, Der Gesang Der Sirenen [The Singing of the Sirens], was published in 1994 when he already was retired; Willi Heinrich died in Dobel, near Karlsruhe, in 2005.

Bibliography[edit]

  • Das geduldige Fleisch (1955 – English editions: The Willing Flesh UK, 1956, and Cross Of Iron, US, 1956)
  • Der Goldene Tisch (1956 – English edition: The Mark Of Shame, 1957)
  • Die Gezeichneten (1958 – English edition: The Savage Mountain, 1958)
  • Alte Häuser sterben nicht (1960 – English edition: The Crumbling Fortress, 1963)
  • Gottes zweite Garnitur (1962)
  • Ferien im Jenseits (1964)
  • Maiglöckchen oder ähnlich (1965)
  • Mittlere Reife (1966)
  • Geometrie einer Ehe (1967)
  • Schmetterlinge weinen nicht (1967)
  • Jahre wie Tau (1971)
  • So long, Archie (1972)
  • Liebe und was sonst noch zählt (1974 – English edition: Rape Of Honour, 1974)
  • Ein Handvoll Himmel (1976)
  • In einem Schloß zu wohnen (1976)
  • Ein Mann ist immer unterwegs (1978)
  • Herzbube & Mädchen (1980)
  • Allein gegen Palermo (1981)
  • Vermögen vorhanden (1982)
  • Traumvogel (1983)
  • Männer zum Wegwerfen (1985)
  • Erzählungen (1985, anthology of three novellas: "Fata Morgana", "Die Freundinnen", "Harte Bandagen")
  • Die Verführung (1986)
  • Zeit der Nymphen (1987)
  • Der Väter Ruhm (1988)
  • Der Reisende der Nacht (1989)
  • Eine spanische Affäre (1990)
  • Ein Herz für Frauen (1992)
  • Puppenspiele (1993)
  • Der Gesang der Sirenen (1994)

References[edit]