William Dietrich Home



Please enjoy a selection of images and slideshows.

1) The Barbed Crown

2) Blood of the Reich Gallery

Introduction: In 1938, SS chief Heinrich Himmler sent a Nazi expedition to Tibet for reasons still mysterious to this day. My new thriller novel “Blood of the Reich” takes this real-life incident as its starting point and weaves in a contemporary woman in peril, twisted Nazi philosophy about race engineering and Social Darwinism, Tibetan legends about the mythical kingdom of Shambhala, and the CERN supercollider near Geneva, which seeks to understand what the universe is really made of. Battles, romance, chases, and betrayals play out against exotic landscapes on three continents, from an SS castle to a lost city.

The fact physicists believe up to 96 percent of existence is made of dark matter and dark energy we can’t detect gives a novelist a lot of latitude. In my story modern Nazis hope to revive their movement with a new source of energy and power.

In Tibet, the age-old swastika symbol is one of good luck, and Germans sought Aryan connections between the cultures. When I researched the novel, I found contrasts as well. Here are some pictures:

Heinrich Himmler was a murderous mystic who believed he was the reincarnation of a medieval king who had battled the Magyars and who hunted for evidence of a glorious German racial past in places as far-flung as Tibet, Iceland, and Peru. His SS archeological organization was called the Ahnenerbe.

The swastika, often part of a mystical design called a sunwheel, is a common religious and good-luck symbol in Asia. This one is carved in Tibet’s Sera Monastery.

Tibetan monks challenge each other in playful theological debates in a daily ritual practiced for centuries. Their goal to live simply and break free from desire was completely opposite Nazi ambition, of course.

In the real Nazi expedition, anthropologist Bruno Berger conducted head measurements to determine if Tibetans were Aryans. My fictional Wilhelm Kranz does the same thing in “Blood of the Reich.”

In 1938, Tibet was remote kingdom headquartered in the fabulous Potala Palace in Lhasa, which my characters visit en route to a lost city and fabulous power source.

In the story, heroine Rominy Pickett is tackled just before her car blows up in a Seattle Safeway parking lot, and taken to a cabin and mine beneath these North Cascades mountains, which include the peak Eldorado.

I took shelter from a squall in this real-life nunnery near Sakya, Tibet. The welcoming Buddhist nuns inspired the fictional “Nunnery of the Closed Door” in my novel.

As in the West, the monks and nuns pledge themselves to lives of poverty, celibacy, and contemplation, and some monasteries have huge depositories of ancient Tibetan books. The novel discusses both religious and scientific theories about the makeup of the world.

One of the characters, American zoologist Benjamin Hood, is briefly held prisoner at this pavilion in the summer palace of the Dalai Lama in Lhasa. He and the Nazis are in a race to find the mythical city of Shambhala.

Tibet’s stark landscape, much of it nearly three miles high, tends to inspire spiritual speculation about existence and purpose. These white chorten are often memorials marking important burials or sites.

The novel’s characters eventually journey to the remote Kunlun Mountains in northern Tibet. This is a photograph of Mount Everest at sunset I took, from the Chinese side.

The climax of the novel takes place at the CERN supercollider near Geneva, a place as fantastic in conception and construction as the Potala Palace in Tibet. Here my fictional Nazis will try again for mastery of the world.

3) The Dakota Cipher Photo Slideshow

Ethan Gage’s quest for the Book of Thoth in “Napoleon’s Pyramids” and “The Rosetta Key” electrified audiences around the world, selling into 28 languages. Our wayward hero is back in this sequel, enlisted by Bonaparte for the Marengo campaign and then sent by newly-elected Thomas Jefferson on a mysterious and perilous quest to the edge of the American frontier.

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4) The Rosetta Key Photo Slideshow
In “Napoleon’s Pyramids,” American adventurer Ethan Gage learned that a secret book powerful enough to change world history had been spirited out of the Great Pyramid. In this sequel, set during Bonaparte’s 1799 invasion of the Holy Land, Ethan is back, pressed into an agent’s role for the British as he searches for the mysterious Book of Thoth and word of the final fate of his lover Astiza and his rival, Count Alessandro Silano.

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5) Napoleon’s Pyramids Photo Slideshow
Revolutionary France, 1798. American adventurer Ethan Gage, gambler, sharpshooter, and pupil of the late Franklin, wins a mysterious medallion in a card game. Within hours he is framed with a prostitute’s murder and in flight to join Napoleon’s secret invasion of Egypt, enlisted with a promise to unlock the secrets of the Great Pyramid.

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6) The Scourge of God Photo Slideshow
It is 450 A.D. and venerable Rome has stood for twelve centuries. Yet legend and prophecy foretells the Empire’s end in just three years. On the plains of Hunuguri, Attila the Hun is gathering the most menacing army Rome has ever faced. When he attacks, the horror he unleashes will earn him the title, “The Scourge of God.”

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7) Hadrian’s Wall Photo Slideshow
The Wall. When the Roman Emperor Hadrian first envisioned the awesome edifice in 122A.D., he sought to use stone, wood, and iron to shield Roman Britannia from the unconquered Celtic barbarians. Stretching over 70 miles from one coast to another, the Wall maintained the security of the Roman Empire’s northern outpost for over two hundred years. But now a visitor has come, and with her, changes for the Wall, and perhaps all of Rome.

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