The Remnants

It's autumn and the landlord of number 13, the only unrenovated house left on Hebelstrasse, has been vacating the building of its tenants for the past two years. 55-year-old janitor Karl Kramer, 72-year-old Elisabeth Buttkies, a retired German teacher, and Marina, a 28-year-old part-time student ...

Leavers’ Ball

"People tell each other stories in order to survive-but for death they need music." Marten feels most at home in graveyards: they are quiet and their trees offer plenty of shade. Even as a child he was the odd one out-and as an adult he takes up the profession that fits him like a lid fits ...

Sweet Occupation

"If you look your enemy in the eye, he's no longer your enemy."

Five men in their middle years: convicted former terrorists Muhammad, Suleiman and Jamil from the occupied territories and Israeli refuseniks Chen and Amil. Five former prisoners who founded the Peace Movement after ...


Light and Sound

How do you get to grips with your life?

Johanna can't believe that she and Boris have never even kissed. Ana-Clara, Boris's Portuguese girlfriend can't be the reason. Johanna always wants to know exactly what's going on - and why. How come one of her classmates made another one his slave, ...


Land


A young man sets out on the tracks of his ancestors. They left Greece for Alexandria, where they ran a patisserie that was famed throughout the Levant. Forced to leave Egypt at short notice, they ended up in exile in Switzerland. The legacy of a proud tradition of the confectioner's art ...


Cross-countries

What is it we're looking for-in ourselves, in others, in faraway places?

Berlin, summer 2013: Clara, a young doctor, quite literally runs into Amal when their bicycles are involved in a minor collision. Amal, a 21-year old Iraqi student, has fled Baghdad and is applying for asylum ...


The Airship

Senior Councillor Neise has decided to cross the Atlantic to America in the luxurious zeppelin Berlin. It's the 1920s, the world is filled with motion and Neise is eager to escape the humdrum routine of his desk job. But it soon becomes all too evident that there's something fishy going on ...


Frederick

Frederick only ever wanted to dance, nothing else; and he achieved such unprecedented levels of accomplishment that no one could come close to him. Yet his unsurpassable perfection became his own undoing-because anything that's beyond compare cries out to be destroyed.

Fred Astaire ...


The Book of Impositions

We really oughtn't drive. It's too undemanding. But are we not constantly exposed to all sorts of minor irritations on the train as well? Do we just need to turn a deaf ear more often? What's happened to common courtesy? Can an artist be badly dressed? Why is mediocrity so often a success?


Days of Night

Anton, an elderly professor of literature from Frankfurt, owns a house on the English coast. One day it is burgled, and although no harm comes to him or his wife, he feels sick at heart and overcome with a sense of impotence. Increasingly he finds himself thinking back to his childhood in 1940s ...


Heaven Near the Louvre

On Happiness in Paris

Once one has been a woman in Paris, one cannot be it anywhere else. Montesquieu

Rive Droite, the 1st Arrondissement, one of the most venerable and most elegant neighbourhoods right in the heart of Paris, between Place Vendôme and the Tuileries Gardens. In 38 brief chapters, Julie ...


More often than not all very fast

For years, Albert has been visiting Fred during the holidays and at weekends, but they've never really grown close. Albert only ever called Fred Fred, never Father. Fred is a child trapped in the body of an old man, he spends his time reading encyclopaedias, waves at green cars and guards ...

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