Modern Classics Child Of All Nations

Modern Classics Child Of All Nations

by Irmgard Keun


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780141188454
Publisher: Penguin UK
Publication date: 03/24/2009
Pages: 176
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 1.25(h) x 9.00(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Michael Hofmann is a translator and the author of several books of poetry and criticism. Penguin publish his translations of Franz Kafka, Hans Fallada, Irmgard Keun and Jakob Wassermann.

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Praise for Child of All Nations
"Hugely engaging. . .[with] room for everything—shrewdness, forgiveness, wit and loneliness—while love makes all its hopeless deals with hope."-Anne Michaels, author of the #1 bestseller Fugitive Pieces

"An utterly compelling look at pre-World War II Nazi Germany. . .poignant."- Kirkus

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Modern Classics Child Of All Nations 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
pamelad on LibraryThing 5 days ago
Child of All Nations by Irmgard KeunUnable to publish, with her books banned, Irmgard Keun joined the German literary diaspora in Europe. From June 1936 until January 1938 she travelled with Joseph Roth. They borrowed from acquaintances, extracted advances from publishers, and lived on credit, moving on when their visas expired. Kully, the nine-year old narrator of [Child of All Nations] travels the same route as Keun and Roth. The character of her unreliable, extravagant father may even be based on Roth.The book begins with Kully and her mother, Annie, stranded penniless in a first-class hotel in Ostende while Kully's father tries to raise money in Prague. Annie and Kully avoid the front desk and eat only one meal a day in the restaurant, where they order the most expensive dishes on the menu because they are afraid of annoying the waiters. Under instructions from her husband, Peter, Annie desperately tries to wangle an advance from Peter's Belgian publisher so that she can pay the hotel bill and move on to Amsterdam.The unpaid bills, the expired visas, Peter¿s absences and her mother¿s sadness are the norm for Kully. She knows that her father cannot return to Germany because he would be jailed. She cannot write to her friends in Germany because receiving a letter could put them at risk from the Nazis. She hears her parents and their friends talk of death, and witnesses the attempted suicide of another writer. Kully relates these events from the matter-of-fact, accepting perspective of a nine-year-old.Keun¿s book provides a fascinating glimpse of life as an exile from Hitler¿s Germany. Highly recommended.