First day of sale: 22.08.2008
EINE NIE VERGESSENE GESCHICHTE – AN UNFORGOTTEN STORY
Novel, about 320 pages
“A refreshingly written novel… Koneffke understands how to awaken his figures to life in this overflowing and lovingly written family score. The charming portrait by a member of a later generation who finds the old good-for-nothing character in the “hidden away uncle” and subtly tells great stories in his wake.”
“… the sovereign gesture with sentences in which every word has its place, nostalgic phrases that by no means sound fussy, but whose authenticity shines like jewels in a wonderfully perfect text. The author seems to have the entire spectrum of language at his disposal… Koneffke’s stylistic brilliance manifests itself completely in the fact that all of this seems to have been accomplished with a flick of the wrist – a really pleasurable read. (...) Great and greatest narrative art.” FRANKFURTER ALLGEMEINE ZEITUNG
“An imposing twentieth-century family saga totally defined by the trauma of denial.” FOCUS
“Although Jan Koneffke takes risks on incalculable historical fields, he is a story teller with temperament of language and critically nuanced sensitivity. His prose breathes an aromatic abundance of life.” LITERATUREN
“A very personal kind of family history, climatically tight and with a joy in story telling as well as a succulently described cast of characters.” KÖLNER STADTANZEIGER
The ill-fated story of a Pomeranian family between the German Empire and the post-war era.
Felix Kannmacher grows up in Freiwalde, a little town on the Baltic Sea halfway between the present-day cities of Gdansk and Szczecin. His father earns a living as a stoic schoolmaster, his mother, on the other hand, is hysterical. Young Felix does not have it easy between these two poles. But music has been his only enthusiasm in life any way every since it had been prophesised that he would have a future as a concert pianist.
The piano grew silent when Felix’ mother removed the strings in 1914 and took them to the collecting point as raw material for the war effort. Felix lost his heart to Emilie, the pharmacist’s daughter. But his older brother also cast an eye on her; only Emilie’s obstinate sister Alma remained for Felix. Shortly before the double wedding he took to his heels...
“Eine nie vergessene Geschichte” is an epoch novel spanning the period from the late nineteenth century to the end of World War Two. Jan Koneffke records the picture of a long-passed age full of vivid characters complete with all their shady sides. And as the stagecoach driver Weidemann frequently said: “Things always get worse than they already are.”
Polish sample translation available!
Jan Koneffke was born in Darmstadt in 1960. He studied philosophy and German literature in Berlin and spent seven years in Rome after receiving a Villa Massimo grant. He now lives as a writer and journalist in Vienna and Bucharest. He has been awarded the Leonce and Lena Prize for Poetry, the Friedrich Hölderlin Advancement Prize and the Offenbach Prize for Literature, among others. DuMont published his poetry volume “Was rauchte ich Schwaden zum Mond” (2001), “Abschiedsnovelle” (2006) as well as the novels “Paul Schatz im Uhrenkasten” (2000), “Eine Liebe am Tiber” (2004), “Eine nie vergessene Geschichte” (2008) and "Die sieben Leben des Felix Kannmacher" (2011).