In this month’s 6 Degrees of Separation, hosted by Kate, I am leaping from Bret Easton Ellis’s Less Than Zero straight to the realms of German literature and staying there for the duration. What else would I do during German Literature Month?
1) Less than Zero was Bret Easton EllIs’s debut novel, published in 1986.
2) Happy Birthday, Turk! was Jacob Arjouni’s debut crime novel, also published in 1986. It is narrated in the plain matter-of-fact style of the hard-boiled.
3) In absolute contrast to the lushness of Patrick Süsskind’s phenomenally successful historical crime novel, Perfume. Also a debut novel, published in 1986. John E Woods’s English translation won the PEN Translation prize in 1987.
4) Tess Lewis is latest recipient of that prize for her translation of Maja Haderlap’s Angel of Oblivion. The German original won the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize in 2011.
5) There is another link to the author of Malina. Both Haderlap and Bachmann were born in the Austrian state of Carinthia.
6) Ingeborg Bachmann wrote Malina in response to Max Frisch’s Gantenbein, which she saw as a betrayal of their 5-year relationship. I haven’t read either book (yet), but given the tumultuous nature of their love affair, I am somewhat eager to get to them.
7) Frisch was a member of the left-wing Swiss writing group, Gruppe Olten. So, too, was Friedrich Dürrenmatt, author of the last book in this month’s chain, The Inspector Barlach Mysteries, which I read, appropriately enough, for last year’s #germanlitmonth.