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Jenny Erpenbeck The End of Days

ISBN 13: 9781846275159

The End of Days

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Winner of the 2015 Independent Foreign Fiction Prize From one of the most daring voices in European fiction, this is a story of the twentieth century traced through the various possible lives of one woman. She is a baby who barely suffocates in the cradle. Or perhaps not? She lives to become as an adult and dies beloved., Or dies betrayed. Or perhaps not? Her memory is honoured. Or she is forgotten by everyone., Moving from a small Galician town at the turn of the century, through pre-war Vienna and Stalin's Moscow to present-day Berlin, Jenny Erpenbeck homes in on the moments when life follows a particular branch and 'fate' suddenly emerges from the sly interplay between history, character and pure chance. The End of Days is a novel that pulls apart the threads of destiny and allows us to see the present and the past anew.

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Review:

'[An] absolute must-read. It has stunned and moved everyone who has read it.' -- Arifa Akbar, Independent

'A short, musical novel... philosophically and technically ambitious... shot through with an insight that almost blinds... Erpenbeck's Chekhovian talent for letting us into the shifting consciousness of her characters' various incarnations is such that with each death our loss feels definitive. But while in Chekhov there are no exits from personality, here there are no exits from history... Reading Erpenbeck is like falling under hypnosis. Exhilarating' -- Kapka Kassabova, Guardian

'Always startling and profound, Jenny Erpenbeck is a master of allegory. Few contemporary writers can so deftly paint the moral interplays between light and shadow' -- Chloe Aridjis

'Concise and moving... Jenny Erpenbeck makes swift work of the one-life-multiple-outcomes conceit touched on by Kate Atkinson and David Mitchell - and is the best of the bunch' -- Tim Martin, Books of the Year, Daily Telegraph

'Erpenbeck has honed an extraordinary gift for focusing the sweep of European history into intimate moments, captured in prose of a haunting beauty and tenderness. The End of Days compresses almost 100 years of war, exile, revolution and persecution into rapt snapshots from a single life. Hypnotically involving' -- Boyd Tonkin, Independent

'The End of Days prises open the troubled box that is 20th-century European history and entrenches [Erpenbeck's] position as the most brilliant European writer of my generation' -- Neel Mukherjee, Book of the Year, Irish Times

'In Erpenbeck's world, everything is connected. Stylistically, this is conveyed through tiny parallels and repetitions - elusive leitmotifs that echo across the protagonist's alternate lives. Indeed, the book's basic theme of birth and death indirectly recurs in the minutiae of its imagery. In this way, Erpenbeck deploys the smallest details to recapitulate her ideas. The wisdom of this novel lies in the way its form subtly subverts death's permanence' -- David Winters, Literary Review

'If you think this sounds like Kate Atkinson's Life After Life, think again. Moving [and] involving... its effects are arrived at in a very different way from what we have come to expect from the Anglo-American novel' -- David Mills, Sunday Times

'A wonderfully crafted, memorable read' -- New Internationalist

'Compactly lyrical... Erpenbeck [has] condensed a century of European history into the turning-points of a woman's life' -- Boyd Tonkin, Fiction in translation book of the year, Independent

'Masterful... The End of Days builds on Erpenbeck's already impressive body of work. Her writing is so powerful and so poetic and her storytelling so nuanced. Erpenbeck has important things to tell us; and she tells them beautifully' -- Independent on Sunday

'An absolute must-read' -- 'Summer Reads', Independent

'Susan Bernofsky's thoughtful translation does justice to Erpenbeck's masterly prose' -- Paperback review, Independent

'Spell-binding... It's an inventive way of exploring the personal and the political. It's the kind of demanding novel that bears, and rewards, repeat reading- Paperback review, Independent on Sunday
'A genuine European masterpiece' -- Roy Foster, Books of the Year, TLS

'Startling and profound' Justine Jordan, Book of the Year, Guardian

'What Erpenbeck captures perfectly in the End of Days is the urgency by which our lives are pushed forward, yet on the other hand the transitory, perhaps futile, nature of human existence' --Will Gore, Irish Independent

'Masterful... The End of Days builds on Erpenbeck's already impressive body of work. Her writing is so powerful and so poetic and her storytelling so nuanced. Erpenbeck has important things to tell us; and she tells them beautifully' -- Independent on Sunday

'This slim novel, winner of this year's Independent's Foreign Fiction Prize, packs a mighty punch and richly deserves its numerous accolades.' -- Lucy Popescu in The Huffington Post

'Astonishing and deeply humane' -- BBC Radio 4, Saturday Review

'A compressed epic... Erpenbeck possesses a remarkable gift for shifting, almost unnoticeably, between the telescopic and the microscopic and vast swaths of geological time. Prepare for a kind of happy vertigo' -- National Post

'[An] eerily powerful meditation on the ways a life can end... [Erpenbeck] captures [a] primal quality through her dreamy montage-like narration' -- New Rrpublic

'The End of Days is like the view from a plane zigzagging through the skies over 20th-century Europe, creating a connect-the-dots puzzle... [It] retains the sense of menace integral to any tale of predestination' -- Los Angeles Review of Books

'A masterly piece of work' -- Susan Osborne, A Life in Books blog

'This is a beautifully written novel, impressively translated from the German by Susan Bernofsky. The End of Days is a compelling reminder that worrying about the unknowable will do nothing to delay the inevitable. Masterful' -- Alice Fishburn, Financial Times

'The End of Days has the same dizzying emotional reach as [Erpenbeck's] previous works... This profound meditation reaches to the heart of a cultural world of spiritual intensity, social utopianism and political catastrophe that has variously shaped German literature - and it is expertly translated by Susan Bernofsky. Incantatory' -- Lesley Chamberlain, TLS

'There is no one writing now who is quite like [Erpenbeck], possessing such an understanding of the deep currents of history while gifted with the ability to do such extraordinary things with form. In Susan Bernofsky's lucid, seamless translation, The End of Days emerges as a necessary and illuminating novel, alight with intelligence and meaning. Surprising and profound' -- Neel Mukherjee, New Statesman

'Sharp and powerful... Erpenbeck's novel intertwines the personal with the grand sweep of history to great effect, underlining the importance of both. I would certainly expect to see The End of Days on the IFFP shortlist; for me, it's potentially a winner' -- David Hebblethwaite

'A literary event' -- MDR Figaro

'A worthy winner of the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize 2015, Erpenbeck's echoing story of a single woman's multiple lives [is] an inventive way of exploring the personal and the political. It's the kind of demanding novel that bears, and rewards, repeat rereading. Spell-binding' -- Lesley McDowell, Independent on Sunday

'Her device of an ever-new beginning is a coup. But her refinement in the form of separating the individual stories and intermezzi gives the book the quality of a grand symphony... A great novel' -- Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

'A memorable and haunting novel' -- Christie Hickman, Sunday Express

'A beautiful meditation on the different possible lives of one woman... The prose is spare and moving: the structure fascinating - all echoes and repeated motifs down the troubled twentieth-century. Erpenbeck deftly weaves an understanding of how paper and politics play out in an individual life... An intense study of guilt, grief, love and destiny... By the end of this concise novel [...] we have experienced something profound and important. Susan Bernofsky's translation skilfully conveys Erpenbeck's vision: to take us into the dark places and shed light there in unexpected ways.' --New Books

'An extraordinary piece of work... This is a work of immense ambition, both literary - each 'life' comes with its own prose rhythm, language and preoccupations - and politically. It is emotionally ravishing, philosophically provocative and, thanks to this wonderful translation by Susan Bernofsky, poetically lush' --Big Issue

About the Author:

JENNY ERPENBECK is author of Visitation (2010) and The Old Child & The Book of Words (2008), both published by Portobello. Her fiction is published in fourteen languages.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780811225137: The End of Days

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ISBN 10: 0811225135 ISBN 13: 9780811225137
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company, 2016
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Book Description Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. Winner of the 2015 Independent Foreign Fiction PrizeFrom one of the most daring voices in European fiction, this is a story of the twentieth century traced through the various possible lives of one woman. She is a baby who barely suffocates in the cradle. Or perhaps not? She lives to become as an adult and dies beloved. Or dies betrayed. Or perhaps not? Her memory is honoured. Or she is forgotten by everyone. Moving from a small Galician town at the turn of the century, through pre-war Vienna and Stalin's Moscow to present-day Berlin, Jenny Erpenbeck homes in on the moments when life follows a particular branch and 'fate' suddenly emerges from the sly interplay between history, character and pure chance. The End of Days is a novel that pulls apart the threads of destiny and allows us to see the present and the past anew. Seller Inventory # AA99781846275159

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Book Description Paperback. Condition: new. Paperback. Who are we when we are born? Who are we when the hour of our death comes? What changes? What remains? By tracing the five possible lives lived and the five deaths of one woman whose life spans, or fails to span, the twentieth century, the magical, magisterial author of Visitation exposes the machinations of what we call 'fate' - actually inexplicable and undetermined, an interplay of culture and history, of family and personal entanglements. The protagonist never grows up, suffocates in her cradle. Or perhaps not? Dies as a lover. Or doesn't after all. Dies betrayed. Highly honoured. Or forgotten by everyone. Or perhaps not? Erpenbeck takes us on a journey through the many lives that could be contained in one single life - starting off in a small Galician town in about 1900 and going to Vienna and Stalin's Moscow before ending up in present-day Berlin. She interrogates the impact of the political on the personal, and as she tackles this theme she draws on a uniquely German narrative impetus: the ongoing need to reckon with its past and its place in recent history. A story of the twentieth century told through the various lives of one woman: an intoxicating masterpiece of a novel that kneads Time and History like dough Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. Seller Inventory # 9781846275159

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