From the author of The Bride Price (a New York Times Notable Book of 1992) comes a dark and haunting story of memory, guilt, and the meaning of responsibility.
Andreas, a once-promising poet, lives with his bride, Susanne, in postwar Germany. Aalthough surrounded by the trappings of comfort and success, Andreas is obsessed by the memory of Susanne’s younger brother, Daniel, whom he had sheltered in Amsterdam, but who was eventually deported by the Gestapo. The war over, Andreas rebuilds his life in the “new” Germany, trying to recapture Daniel through marriage to his sister. But he is unable to write or to find peace, unable to forget his torture over Daniel or the harrowing days and nights of the Occupation.
Finally, he returns to Amsterdam to confront his memories of the war — it was there that Andreas first recognized the horror inflicted by his own people, as every night he witnessed the round-up of the city’s Jews beneath his window. And it was there that he came to the realizations about himself, his past, and his heritage that give this story its profound resonance.
Told in a distinctly urgent voice and with a gaze at once acerbic and compassionate, Last Trolley from Beethovenstraat, like The Bride Price, is a “thoughtful, beautifully written exposition on love and fear” (ALA Booklist) by one of Germany’s most respected contemporary novelists.
Praise for Last Trolley from Beethovenstraat
Riveting, extraordinary, valuable, unusual.