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Comments

iliana

NYRB books really have some amazing literature don't they? I'd never heard of Seghers but what a story. So on your subscription do they send you any type of book or were you able to select from certain genres?

Danielle

They do have a great front and backlist of books. I would pretty much happily read anything they publish. For the subscription they send newly published books, so you don't necessarily know what will be showing up in the mail--though there is usually an ad ahead of time in the New York York Review of Books announcing the next title. I try and not look, but I usually can't help myself!

Caroline

I'm going to read this soon. I've had it for a while nowand when I read the book on female German writers during WWII I was reminded of it again. The Seventh Cross is very good too, so are her short stories. I think her books were nevre that political but she lived a political life. Many communists went to Mexico. She later lived in the DDR.
There are numerous real life stories incorporated in Transit.

Stefanie

I would never believe a book about waiting could be so compelling but it was. I liked it very much too. It is very rich but deceptively simple. I'm pretty sure I am going to continue my subscription next year too.

cath

I hope to find a copy here, so that I can read it later in the year for my In Europe project. It sounds very good.

Danielle

I was so excited to see it as one of the NYRB subscription books as I remembered you had mentioned it in relation to the book you read about German women writers. I think you will like it when you get to it. My library has The Seventh Cross, which I would like to read at some point, but I think I won't read her books back to back. It's interesting the life she led and the fact that she returned to East Berlin--but then I think she was a serious communist so it was natural to go back?

Danielle

I really liked it--liked the twist (of sorts) with the narrator and Marie and the identities he assumed. It was not hard reading, but it still took me a while to work my way through it. I am reading Turtle Diary now, which is an oddish little book, but I think I like it! I am contemplating getting the Hazard out to start--with the understanding it will likely take me the rest of the year to read, so I will keep working on the newer books as they come in! This has turned out to be a great way to discover new books/authors!

Danielle

I hope you are able to find a copy--maybe your library will have it since the NYRB edition is a reissue. I think it would make an excellent companion to your Europe reading! :)

smithereens

Your description reminds me of a thriller set in Lisbon, Portugal, during WWII and also a port of exile for many refugees. The thriller itself wasn't that interesting but the description of the kafkaiesque wait and desperation was quite good, as this one seems to be.

Grad

Our library system has a few NYRB books, but not very many. I've been keeping my eye out for this one, though. It sounds like the basis for a film noir!

Danielle

I think I might know which book you are thinking of--was it written by a European author? Maybe someone from Spain or Portugal? Though now I can't quite recall either book title or author. It's fascinating to read about that period--incredible to think of what people went though--such massive dislocations! The Seghers captured it brilliantly.

Danielle

Mine doesn't have so many either--though since I work in one library and go to the public library--between the two I have more options than I might have otherwise. I would love to own a whole set. I can totally see this book filmed in B&W--a really good, atmospheric 40s movie--did you ever see The Third Man? Different sort of story, but the same idea--setting-wise. If you see this one--snap it up!

litlove

I've just read Stefanie's review of this and now yours! Ok, I give in, I have to read this one! My real life book club is starting on the theme of WW2 and we need a novel to accompany the two non-fiction books we're reading (both memoirs, I hasten to add). I will suggest this one to them!

Danielle

This would be a great book for a book club to discuss! It was well done and such an interesting perspective on the war--and without anything gruesome or bloody! I would love to know what you think and hope your book club chooses it.

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