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Gottfried Keller

Mirror, the Kitten

The kitten is actually a tomcat and is called Mirror because his fur is so marvellously shiny. But when his benefactress dies, things start to go downhill for him. Since it’s now on him to find food, he becomes skinny and eventually he runs around looking shaggy, his fur is dull.

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Text by Gottfried Keller in the public domain, illustration rights available

Esther Kinsky

Slates

Esther Kinsky’s new book is dedicated to slate, the polymorphic, versatile sedimentary rock, and to the Slate Islands, a small archipelago off the West coast of Scotland. For centuries, slate was mined on those islands that are part of the Inner Hebrides and they are lastingly shaped by the intensive industry that was abandoned many decades ago and that has left behind a bizarre landscape of debris and flooded quarries.

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Alexander Kluge

Russia-Container

Not just in light of a currently contested pipeline but also after centuries of both exchange and rejection, Russia and Germany were and are as far away from each other as they are connected. The political present seems critical, the signs point towards conflict and polarity.

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Russia (Garage)

Benjamín Labatut

Un Verdor Terrible

In his literary exploration Un Verdor Terrible, Benjamín Labatut writes about the fine line between genius and insanity and about the ambivalence of scientific discoveries in four chapters that are as sensuous as they are bizarre. The text portrays the life of scientists Fritz Haber, Werner Heisenberg, Alexander Grothendieck and Erwin Schrödinger as that of daredevil dreamers and passionate trailblazers. We read of their Eureka!-moments, their triumphant epiphanies, but also of their ethical shortcomings, their mental lows and their narcissism.

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USA & Canada (NYRB), UK & ANZ (Pushkin Press), Spanish world rights (Anagrama), Chinese simplex rights (Shanghai 99), Brazilian Portuguese rights (Todavia), Portuguese rights (Elsinore), France (Seuil), Italy (Adelphi), Netherlands (Atlas|Contact)

Bernd Ladwig

A Political Philosophy of Animal Rights

Every year we cause great harm to billions of animals and kill them only to enjoy insignificant benefits such as the taste of their meat. Since this infraction of the rights of animals belongs to the fundamental order of society, for which all of us are responsible, it is a topic for political philosophy. Philosopher Bernd Ladwig, who teaches at the Free University of Berlin, provides a profound overview of the current international debate.

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Maya Lasker-Wallfisch

Letter to Breslau

Maya grows up in silence. The German past, the Holocaust that her mother survived as a cellist in the Women’s Orchestra of Auschwitz – nobody talks about these things. And yet, Maya cannot escape the wounds of her parents, a stable life impossible she drifts through 1970s London. The nights too long, drugs, debts, the wrong guys, an escape to Jamaica where she almost dies …

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Benjamin Maack

If That Still Works, Things Can’t Be That Bad

»Am I going to be tired for the rest of my life now?« Benjamin Maack asks as he stands outside a psychiatric hospital with his big black suitcase. Four years prior he had committed himself after a nervous breakdown – the diagnosis: depression.

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Nicolas Mahler

Ulysses

Dublin, June 16, 1904: a day in the life of the advertising agent Leopold Bloom and the sensations of the ordinary – James Joyce has created a maximal book from a minimum of matter: Ulysses, the most important novel of modernity, the book of the century. Joyce’s creation, spectacular also in regard to form, has inspired Nicolas Mahler to a story in pictures that is not a mere illustration or adaption of the novel but an independent and equally as inventive work.

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Philip Manow

(Un-)Democratising Democracy

Democracy versus democracy – illiberal versus liberal, direct versus representative democracy, maybe even »the people vs. democracy«? It seems as though democracy has never been as contested as it is today, while, at the same time, what it leads to has never been as contested either. Everyone is competing in its name and accuses their adversary of being an opponent of democracy.

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Domestic Rights Sales: German Audiobook (CC Live)

Friederike Mayröcker, Angelika Kaufmann

Jimi

»Jimi the Polar Bear was lying in the arms of the sleeping child, his paws crossed. It was 1 very young polar pear the size of a puppy and he hardly dared to breathe so as not to wake the child. The child was dreaming that Jimi was lying in its arms and told him 1 story.«

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Hans-Peter Müller

Max Weber

These days, many consider Max Weber to be the most important cultural and social scientist, everybody around the globe is talking about the genius to whom a stamp was dedicated in Germany. Why? What makes him so great? How did he achieve a level in his discipline that is comparable to that of Goethe in the field of literature and that of Kant in the field of philosophy?

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Ursula Naumann

El Caballero Gustavo Bergenroth

Early in the morning of August 20, 1860, the East-Prussian jurist Gustav Bergenroth arrives in Simancas, an isolated village in Castile. His destination: the official archive of the Crown of Castile, an ancient castle fortified with thick walls, moats, towers and battlements, which has only recently become accessible to researchers. He wishes to conduct research on the Tudor period, the most colourful era of English history.

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Dirk Peitz

Looking Ahead: How We Are Narrating the Future

We can’t foresee the future. If you believe that you’re already living it, as some people in the Silicon Valley do, you need to adjust yourself because the future global power China is preparing to take over interpretational sovereignty. What, then, can we say about what is to come? Do we have reason to rejoice? Do we need to be scared?

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Marion Poschmann

Nimbus

Nimbus, the dark cloud, is a manifestation of momentum, splendour, vastness, and yet it belongs to the realm of the amorphous, impalpable. It takes effect, it determines the atmosphere, at the same time it is withdrawn, remains uncontrollable.

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Christoph Ribbat

The Breathing Instructor

A lady with a slight German accent teaches mindfulness in New York City: how to focus on one’s breathing, how to feel the body and survive the stress of living in a big city. Her studio is an insider’s secret for singers, dancers and tense office workers. Her students believe that she is completely and utterly relaxed. But she keeps her own painful past hidden from them.

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Emanuel Richter

The Pensioners’ Democracy

Which consequences does the dramatic overageing of society have for our democracy? Are a few well-off »best agers« und »silver surfers« going to seize political participation and dismiss the interests of the younger age groups? Or will the democratic hope of the senior citizens for an expanded and more intensified political participation that benefits all generations be fulfilled?

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Michael Scharang

Insurrection

»This story began in New York, continued in Vienna and ended with the Austrian government fleeing abroad.« This is the first sentence of Michael Scharang’s new novel, Insurrection. What follows is not the revolution but 21 chapters, funny, polemic and challenging, that talk about nothing less than the possibility of a better and fairer world.

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Lutz Seiler

Star 111

Two days after the Fall of the Berlin Wall, Inge and Walter Bischoff leave their old life behind – the apartment, the garden, their work and the country. Their journey takes the two fifty-year- olds far away: Through transit camps and temporary accommodations they follow a dream they have long since fostered, a »life secret« even their son Carl knows nothing about.

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English world rights (And Other Stories), Arabic world rights (Kalima), France (Verdier), Netherlands (Meridiaan), Denmark (Batzer), Sweden (Norstedts), Greece (Patakis)

Domestic Rights Sales: German Audiobook (DAV), German Entire Radio Readings (rbb & NDR), German Book Club (Büchergilde Gutenberg)

Peter Sloterdijk

Making the Heavens Speak

Detours are the most direct paths to the centre. Peter Sloterdijk’s new work is proof of this theory: Located beyond topicality, theopoetics is, on first glance, about the attempts to make God or the gods speak stored in the library of humanity: either they speak themselves, directly, or their deeds and thinking are reproduced indirectly by the poets.

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English world rights (Polity), France (Payot & Rivages), Netherlands (Boom)

Theodor Storm

Little Havelman

Little Havelman is lying in his cot and can’t come to rest. He wants his mother to drive him around, but she has already gone to sleep in her four-poster bed. That’s when he decides to take matters into his own hands and drives through the keyhole and out into the night on a moonbeam…

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Text by Theodor Storm in the public domain, illustration rights sold to
Arabic world rights (Sefsafa)

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