The book you want to read next/Das Buch, das du als nächstes lesen willst

I have a couple of boxes full of books that I once wanted to read next, but the one I actually intend to read next is Heimsuchung, by Jenny Erpenbeck, which has just come out in an English translation, Visitation. It’s the story of a house near Berlin and twelve successive inhabitants through the political vicissitudes of German history. It is said to take a while to get into (see the German description by Isabel Bogdan) – it does start off 24,000 years earlier when the ice finishes shaping the landscape.

I was alerted to the book not by the review by Michel Faber in the Guardian (which seems to suggest we should not be reading Jonathan Franzen), but from Katy Derbyshire’s weblog love german books (whose RSS feed never works, so I have to go to the site every few days). Katy writes in English and mainly about books already translated into English, and she always gives me the feeling of telling it like it is, as in the latest entry on the reading at Soho House in Berlin from the original and Susan Bernofsky’s translation.

The book came out in paperback in February 2010, and German books take ages to come out in paperback, so it’s not surprising I couldn’t find it in the small bookshops in Fürth at the weekend, but I did order it at Genniges for Monday. What I wonder is whether I would have found it at Hugendubel in Nuremberg, or even Thalia.

5 thoughts on “The book you want to read next/Das Buch, das du als nächstes lesen willst

  1. David van Reybrouck’s _Congo_ for me. It has made a clean sweep of the Flemish-and-Dutch literary awards and I really need to read it before it is ubiquitous in translation, or I will lose all snooting privileges.

    (Incidentally the love chermanbooks RSS worked for me with bloglines and also now does with Google reader. At least, I get enough of it that I do not find myself wanting more.)

  2. Great to see comments back on again!

    I buy quite a lot of reference works from Schweitzer. They have (relatively small) shops in Mainz and Wiesbaden, as well as many other cities in Germany, in addition to the amazing shop in Munich (always on the itinerary for any trip to Munich.

    I subscribe to the weekly list of new publications, which you can customise by quite narrow subject area levels.

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