Urs Faes

Summer in Brandenburg - A Novel

(German title: Sommer in Brandenburg)
ca. 262 pages
Urs Faes
Foto: Urs Faes
© Silke Keil

Urs Faes, born in Aarau in 1947, lives and works in Zurich and in San Feliciano (Italy). In 2008 he was awarded the Preis der Schweizerischen Schillerstiftung.

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»In Urs Faes’s prose, love glows with a darkness and melancholy reminiscent of Gabriel García Márquez.« Malte Herwig, Der Spiegel


Love in a time of darkness

Two young people, not quite twenty years old: he, a gangly boy from Hamburg, middle-class upbringing, musical; she, with the dark eyes and the easy laugh, the daughter of a Viennese newspaperman. They meet, they work together, they fall in love – under unusual circumstances.

In the summer of 1938, Lissy Harb and Ron Berend are at a country estate in Brandenburg, getting ready to emigrate to Palestine; it is one of several Jewish agricultural institutes, so-called hakshara centres, initially tolerated by the Nazis, where young men and women prepare for the hard life at the kibbutz. They are united in their mutual goal of escaping the terror of the Third Reich, and in their hope for an exit permit.

Summer in Brandenburg tells the story of the touching relationship between two people in a seemingly idyllic microcosm. But the surrounding world makes its present felt in increasingly barbaric ways. And they are faced with the question of how love can grow in a space that gets smaller by the day.

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