Go, Went, Gone

Go, Went, Gone

A Novel

Book - 2017
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The novel tells the tale of Richard, a retired classics professor who lives in Berlin. His wife has died, and he lives a routine existence until one day he spies some African refugees staging a hunger strike in Alexanderplatz. Curiosity turns to compassion and an inner transformation, as he visits their shelter, interviews them, and becomes embroiled in their harrowing fates. Go, Went, Gone is a scathing indictment of Western policy toward the European refugee crisis, but also a touching portrait of a man who finds he has more in common with the Africans than he realizes.
Publisher: New York : New Directions Books, 2017
ISBN: 9780811225946
Characteristics: 286 pages ; 20 cm
Call Number: ERPENBECK, J


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Dec 09, 2017

Without a doubt makes my Top 10 list for 2017. The blurb above is completely accurate. Readers on other websites (The Guardian, for ex) have been talking about this book for months. Susan Bernofsky is the translator and at times the English was so fluid I forgot it was Berlin. Many interesting strands: our narrator is from the GDR and being in the West carries a lot of weight; how he navigates bureaucracy. He opens himself to these much maligned desperate people and he is changed. I adore the ending.


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