Synopses & Reviews
Now in paperback, the extraordinary English language debut from the critically acclaimed writer Maxim Biller, whose “gossamer fictions may remind you of narrative poems in their ability to simultaneously elude and haunt you” (Francine Prose, O, The Oprah Magazine).
• A writer on the verge of international acclaim: maxim Biller’s work received raves when it was published in The New Yorker in the summer of 2007, and he’s already been published in Dutch, Danish, French, Greek, and Czech. German cultural institutions based in the u.S., such as the Goethe House, are enthusiastically helping to promote Biller’s work in english. In addition, Love Today is translated by Anthea Bell, the award-winning German-language translator.
• Twenty-seven exquisite vignettes: Biller depicts the complexities of romantic relationships in the twenty-first century perfectly—the frustration, longing, and loneliness—in these skillfully crafted stories, designed to build upon each other. It’s as if the reader were standing in the courtyard of an apartment building, observing the lives of others, listening to their conversations, experiencing their intimacy.
• For fans of Miranda July, Nathan Englander, and Jonathan Safran Foer: Biller’s writing is sensitive, observant, and honest. The end result is both romantically voyeuristic and deeply moving—Biller is a writer poised for international stardom.
"The course of true love is bumpy indeed for the couples in Love Today (Simon & Schuster), Maxim Biller's first story collection to be translated into English. Set mainly in Germany and the Czech Republic, with side trips to Tel Aviv, France, and New York, these wry, elliptical narratives chart the passions and the discontents of men and women who vanish from each other's lives and reappear without notice, and whom Biller often catches at the moment of confronting the mystery of what keeps them together, or what has driven them apart. In "Seven Attempts at Loving," after a long separation childhood sweethearts meet by accident at a tram stop in Prague; in "Baghdad at Seven-Thirty," a man and his much younger girlfriend watch war news coverage in a bar, straining for a glimpse of the man's American soldier son, about to be deployed to Kuwait; and in "The Architect," an artist named Splash and his Lebanese lover distract themselves from their problems by spying on a neighbor. Deceptively transparent, Biller's brief, gossamer fictions may remind you of narrative poems in their ability to simultaneously elude and haunt you." -- Francine Prose, O Magazine
Following the appearance of two stories in The New Yorker
, German author, playwright, and journalist Maxim Biller makes his English-language debut with a collection of remarkable and beautifully wrought short stories, Love Today
These twenty-seven exquisite vignettes reveal the frustration, longing, and loneliness of human intimacy and love in the twenty-first century. A moment of dialogue between two people seated in an empty bar in "Baghdad at Seven-Thirty" evokes fragility, helplessness, and regret. The childhood friends who meet accidentally throughout the years in "Ziggy Stardust" are alternately drawn toward and repulsed from each other; and the fleeting text messages exchanged in "The Maserati Years" change everything between two lovers in an instant. Collectively, the result is romantic, voyeuristic, and deeply moving.
Already a force in contemporary German literature, Maxim Biller has received praise from critics and readers alike throughout Europe for his perceptive, enchanting prose and the hauntingly familiar emotions his stories can provoke. Love Today introduces a new and gifted writing talent, and an accomplished international literary voice.
About the Author
Maxim Biller was born in Prague in 1960, and emigrated with his family to Germany in 1970. He is the author of three previous story collections and two novels, Esra and The Daughter. In 1999 he received the Theodor-Wolff-Preis, one of the highest awards for journalists in Germany. Two of his short stories have appeared in The New Yorker. Maxim Biller lives in Berlin.Anthea Bell (translator) is the recipient of the Schlegel Tieck Prize for translation from German, the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize, and the Helen and Kurt Wolff Prize in 2002 for the translation of W. G. Sebald's Austerlitz, and the 2003 Austrian State Prize for Literary Translation. She lives in Cambridge, England.