Schlink
1999 Shortlist

The Reader

artwork-image

ABOUT
THE BOOK

A schoolboy in post-war Germany, Michael Berg has a secretive affair with an older woman, Hanna. He learns little about her, but is shocked and somehow guilty when she simply disappears. Some years later, as a law student, Michael is in court to follow a major case. To his amazement he recognises Hanna as one of the defendants. Her attitude during the trial is bizarre, as she allows herself be presented as the ringleader of her co-defendants and seems to be wilfully mishandling her defence. Michael suddenly understands that her behaviour conceals a secret buried deeper even than her terrible crimes. The past of their relationship and of Germany trap Michael for the rest of his life, haunted by the memories of a relationship that he cannot move beyond and by the dilemma of an entire generation. Bernhard Schlink was born in 1944. He is a Professor of Law at the University of Berlin.

ABOUT
THE AUTHOR Bernhard
Schlink

ABOUT
THE TRANSLATOR Carol
Brown Janeway

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Date published
03/11/1997
Country
Germany
Original Language
German
Publisher
Weidenfeld and Nicholson
Translator
Carol Brown Janeway

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