This is the devastating opening of die Mittagsfrau by Julia Franck which won the German Book Prize in and was published in English as. Heffernan, Valerie () Julia Franck, Die Mittagsfrau: Historia Matria and Matrilineal Narrative. In: Emerging German-Language Novelists of. Julia Franck is a German writer. Contents. 1 Life; 2 Literary works; 3 Family connections Her three most recent novels, Lagerfeuer, Die Mittagsfrau, and Rücken an Rücken, as well as the collection Grenzübergänge, engage explicitly with.

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As a nurse she helps care for her ailing father while trying to deal with mittagsrau mentally ill mother. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Ftanck account. In her description of individuals and scenarios, the author doesn’t shy away from a certain amount of stereotyping. So, while reading, I was waiting and hoping to encounter the names Peter and Alice. I really don’t mind drama in a book, terrible things happen, but I at least want to sympathize with one character and there was just nothing to hold on to.

Apr 17, K. Da ist kein Moment in dieser erdachten Biographie, den man auslassen sollte. Nov 17, Amy rated jittagsfrau liked it Shelves: We are transplanted to German, during different eras, and the book opens with the struggles of a young mother who is obviously been abandoned by her spouse.

Julia Franck – Die Mittagsfrau by Melanie Schmier on Prezi

I understand that under her mittzgsfrau, self-preservation required her to withdraw emotionally. A Novel of Love and War about French trench warfare when its author, Sebastian Faulks borndid not even witness any of the two world wars. But it is never confirmed.


Suddenly the action accelerates like a fairground ghost train, franc around in the darkness, its rider blind to her surroundings and therefore deprived of meaningful choices. The complete absence of any punctuation in direct speech, is unusual, yet eventually, it makes the text flow and creates immediacy beyond speech. Keep your eyes closed.

In other words, you have to deduce the themes by yourself and Franck’s is not preachy in expressing her views on these themes. Helene peered through her lashes, but Martha’s eyes weren’t on her any more, there were wandering muttagsfrau, blissfully, under her own half-closed lids, and Helene saw Martha’s lips opening slightly and moving.

So the book was a way of giving her grandmother a story.

Die Mittagsfrau

She leaves Peter in search of Martha who she fears has been taken to a concentration camp. Then down the valley below, where she felt a bone. Wilhelm interrupted her, tapping the boy on the back of the neck. As readers, we watch helplessly as Helene becomes increasingly detached, her heart becoming cold and numb. The author makes a tremendous gamble by having her lead character do something that appears unforgiveable right off the bat. His death is crippling for her, and she is lost but determined to live, which her occupation as nurse makes possible.

Her father returns home after spending years in a WW1 field hospital only to die horribly in his own bed. I also question whether it should be necessary to read an interview to understand the personal nature of the writing.

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In a crowded train station inas throngs of Germans flee to the West, Helene tells her seven-year-old son to sit on a bench and wait while she goes to the bathroom, but she never returns.

Aunt Fanny is in full-swing of the twenties decadence, throwing wild parties, dating young men and developing a nasty cocaine habit. To say that I’ve read this is in fact a lie. As a novelist, Franck forgoes exploiting history but uses it simply as a one of the factors that effects the life of Helene and the decisions she makes. For a novelist to sway a reader’s judgment of the character they present is an admirable and challenging task.

And very few aspects of her life were really under her control. Franck doesn’t want us to feel sorry for Helene or to make excuses for her.

iulia Learning that she is a Jew, he changes her name to Alice and procures papers for her to prove that she is Aryan. The prologue is so searing that there is no doubt as to its immediacy.

It was the same awe that I had, almost a decade ago, while reading Birdsong: The novel opens and closes from the close third person point-of-view of Helene’s young son, Peter.

Marthe carries on her profession as a nurse and Helene works at a pharmacist by day and studies for her nursing qualification by night.