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The Tower: Tales from a Lost Country by Uwe…

The Tower: Tales from a Lost Country (2008)

by Uwe Tellkamp

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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4281340,860 (3.84)6
In derelict Dresden a cultivated, middle-class family does all it can to cope amid the Communist downfall. This striking tapestry of the East German experience is told through the tangled lives of a soldier, surgeon, nurse and publisher. With evocative detail, Uwe Tellkamp masterfully reveals the myriad perspectives of the time as people battled for individuality, retreated to nostalgia, chose to conform, or toed the perilous line between East and West. Poetic, heartfelt and dramatic, The Tower vividly resurrects the sights, scents and sensations of life in the GDR as it hurtled towards 9 November 1989. Uwe Tellkamp was born in 1968 in Dresden. After completing his military service, he lost his place to study medicine on the grounds of 'political sabotage'. He was arrested in 1989, but went on to study medicine in Liepzig, Dresden and New York, later becoming a surgeon. He has won numerous regional prizes for poetry, as well as the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize for The Sleep in the Clocks. In 2008, he won the German Book Prize for The Tower.… (more)
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» See also 6 mentions

English (5)  German (3)  Dutch (2)  French (2)  Italian (1)  All languages (13)
Showing 5 of 5
Audio book. Not my cup of tea. ( )
  kakadoo202 | Feb 26, 2019 |

The Tower / Der Turm has been praised as a masterpiece of describing life in East Germany in the 1980s, the struggle of people against a doomed regime based on secrets and lies.

And, yet, I'm throwing in the towel.

I just can't get past the ridiculous writing style and the overblown descriptions in this book.
Obviously, I am not going to comment on the plot, the characters, or the historical accuracy as I haven't finished the book. What I will say, tho, is that 200 pages in neither plot, characters or setting managed to capture me or made me want to suffer through another 800 pages of writing that was nearly as spurious, convoluted and self-congratulatory as that of my recent encounter with Elizabeth Bowen - and that is saying something. ( )
1 vote BrokenTune | Aug 21, 2016 |
Wunderbare Sprache, aber langweilige Erzählung ( )
1 vote etides | Sep 18, 2011 |
As I told in my tag.
you really feel the leadden pressure of the late DDR.
These years where you could'nt speak up, the suspicion, someone might tell you want to leave the country even your close family.
The problems to get the mere minimum to eat and live
  lorge | Dec 20, 2010 |
Incredible novel about the DDR, wonderfully written. ( )
  bertwerk | Mar 16, 2010 |
Showing 5 of 5
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Uwe Tellkampprimary authorall editionscalculated
Hauth-Grubben, GoverdienTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Für Annett und für Meno Nikolaus Tellkamp
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Die elektrischen Zitronen aus dem VEB "Narva", mit denen der Baum dekoriert war, hatten einen Defekt, flackerten hin und wieder auf und löschten die elbwärts liegende Silhouette Dresdens. Christian zog die feucht gewordenen, an den wollenen Innenseiten mit Eiskügelchen bedeckten Fäustlinge aus und rieb die vor Kälte fast taub gewordenen Finger rasch gegeneinander, hauchte sie an - der Atem verging als Nebelstreif vor dem finster liegenden, in den Fels gehauenen Eingang des Buchensteigs, der hinauf zu Arbogasts Instituten führte.
Außer ihm wartete niemand auf die Standseilbahn, und um sich die Zeit zu vertreiben, musterte er die Anzeigentafeln. Lange waren sie nicht mehr gesäubert worden. Eine warb für das Cafe Toscana auf der Altstädter Elbseite, eine für das weiter in Richtung Schillerplatz liegende Geschäft Nähter, eine andere für das Restaurant Sibyllenhof an der Bergstation. In Gedanken begann Christian Fingersatz und Melodiefolge des italienischen Stücks zu wiederholen, das auf der Geburtstagsfeier für den Vater gespielt werden sollte. Dann sah er in die Dunkelheit des Tunnels.
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