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Passa Porta has a special treat for you! Since German-Austrian writer Daniel Kehlmann traded Berlin for New York, he has rarely appeared at European venues. Passa Porta nevertheless managed to snare him for a conversation about Tyll. In his latest novel, Kehlmann tackles a historical subject, the first time since his international bestseller Measuring the World.
A literary lion
‘My favourite German novelist’, Ian McEwan said about Daniel Kehlmann. Now, whether Kehlmann needed that recommendation is questionable. His sixth novel, Measuring the World, was published in 46 countries and sold 8 million copies. His work has won, among others, the Candide Prize, the Welt Literature Prize, the Kleist Prize, and the Thomas Mann Prize. Kehlmann is also the author of poetry and theatre texts. In the meantime, leading theatre and opera houses are tripping over each other to attract Kehlmann, and his novella You Should Have Left is currently being filmed with Hollywood stars Kevin Bacon and Amanda Seyfried.
In his latest novel, Tyll, Daniel Kehlmann takes readers back to the Thirty Years’ War (1618–48), one of the bloodiest conflicts on German soil. Their guide is Till Uilenspiegel, the legendary entertainer and provocateur.
Till is left to fend for himself when his father, a poor miller with an interest in black magic, is sentenced to death by the Church. The young Till is forced to flee. He travels through Europe, which is ravaged by wars of religion and where everyone is being driven from hearth and home. Including Frederik, Duke of Bohemia, the ‘Winter King’ who, after a reign of only one winter, is forced to leave Prague and who seeks refuge in The Hague.
Till becomes his court jester and gets on particularly well with Frederik’s wife, Liz, who like himself is a rebel spirit with a pronounced sense of justice. Tyll is anything but a dry record of historical facts. Kehlmann has built on the momentum of Measuring the World to create with Tyll a modern roman à tiroirs full of surprising characters and insights in flawless prose.
ORG: Passa Porta, L&M Books, Querido