Blitzed. Drugs in the Third Reich

„Mordant humor. Exhaustively researched.“ The New York Times

„An astonishing account that changes what we know about the Second World War.“ The Guardian

„Very good and extremely interesting … a serious piece of scholarship very well-researched.“ Ian Kershaw

„The most brilliant book I have read in my entire life.“ Dan Snow

„A fascinating, most extraordinary revelation.“ BBC World News

„The book, written with delightful irony, is an eye-opener.“ Sir Antony Beevor

„An original work.“ Le Figaro

„One of those books that lets you see the world with different eyes.“ El Pais

„A missing puzzle piece.“ El Mundo

„Blitzed is making me rethink everything I've ever seen and read about WWII. Terrific!“ Douglas Coupland

The Nazis presented themselves as warriors against moral degeneracy. Yet, as Norman Ohler's gripping bestseller reveals, the entire Third Reich was permeated with drugs: cocaine, heroin, morphine and, most of all, methamphetamines, or crystal meth, used by everyone from factory workers to housewives, and crucial to troops' resilience - even partly explaining German victory in 1940.

The promiscuous use of drugs at the very highest levels also impaired and confused decision-making, with Hitler and his entourage taking refuge in potentially lethal cocktails of stimulants administered by the physician Dr Morell as the war turned against Germany. While drugs cannot on their own explain the events of the Second World War or its outcome, Ohler shows, they change our understanding of it. Blitzed forms a crucial missing piece of the story.





In the early 1990s, an 18 year old girl named Lucy moves from Soweto to Ponte City in Johannesburg. Once white society's architectural showpiece for luxurious living, Ponte is now a teeming hive of newly liberated people, who have come to seek wealth in the city of gold. What they find, though, is a bitter struggle for survival, and the decaying building echoes their dreams and terrors. Ponte is reputed to be the most dangerous apartment complex in the world, and Lucy meets a charismatic gangster, who persuades her to fly to the USA as a drug courier, with disastrous results. 

Years later she comes back to Ponte City. Her story is followed by Roman Kraner, a struggeling reporter from Berlin. He finds that Lucy has an account to settle, and her quest turns into a struggle for life or death.




Klinger, who failed his New Economy career in London moves to Berlin. Searching for a cheap apartment he encounters a derelict building in the old historic center, crammed with strange stories from cellar to attic - including a dark secret about a former tenant.

Soon, Klinger starts to hear voices within the old walls, and he encounters a ghost that tries to convince him to join his fight against the city’s ongoing gentrification. 

But when both of them fall in love with the same woman, a new kind of battle ensues.

„Ohler has reconnected the literary tradition of expressionism with the energy sources of today. A masterpiece.“ DER SPIEGEL

„Electronic expressionism. This book is haunting. And it is an old word that best describes its core: Fantastic.“ DIE ZEIT

Translated into Spanish as „La Maquina de Cuotas“, Debate publishing, 1996

Translated into Spanish as „La Maquina de Cuotas“, Debate publishing, 1996


DIE QUOTENMASCHINE, published 1995 as the first hypertext novel worldwide, is a detective story set in New York. 

Who killed Dr. Kippler, the owner of an upcoming Biotech company? Maxx Rutenberg, a mute detective with offices in Hoboken, is the first detective ever to use the new means of online communication in order to solve his tricky case - only to discover a dark secret that involves his own past.

The original online-version of DIE QUOTENMASCHINE is archived by the German Archive for Literature, Marbach.

„With his internet noir DIE QUOTENMASCHINE, Norman Ohler has achieved a crime novel with wit, self-irony and a new language, adequate to the new medium.“ DER SPIEGEL

„There can be no doubt that Norman Ohler uses language with virtuosity.“ DIE ZEIT



In the fall of 2004, Norman Ohler was invited by the German Goethe-Institut to act as town writer of Ramallah. His texts about the „daily life of the Palestinians“ were published online by DIE ZEIT, including the last interview Yassir Arafat gave, shortly before his death.

After his time in Ramallah, Norman Ohler also worked as Town Writer of Tel Aviv, and Jerusalem.