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28/09/2009

Rainer Merkel "Light Years Away"

Rainer Merkel: "Light Years Away" (Lichtjarhre Entfernt)
Novel

S. Fischer Verlag

English excerpt



The book:
Rainer Merkel's novel presents scenes from a dying love story. A man is on the way to the airport. He is in a rush but his memories hold him up. Here in New York, he has met up with his long-term girlfriend. One last time. He takes more and more run-ups, his thoughts encircling the centre of the catastrophe. He remembers the dramatic events of the past months. A journey through California that ends in a nameless hotel in the middle of the desert. In his memory, this night seems gaudy and over-exposed, and the search for truth becomes a sexual admission, an admission without a listener, a monologue without an audience. Just before his return flight he suddenly realises there would have been a way to save everything.
'What remains of the nights you spend together? I have to count back. Night by night. In a systematic effort of memory, and if I go through everything one more time I might find that decisive moment, the very point I've been looking for all along.'

The author: Rainer Merkel was born in Köln in 1964. He studied philosophy and history of art and lives in Berlin. His previous novels are "Das Jahr der Wunder" (2001) for which he was awarded the Jürgen Ponto Foundation Prize and "Das Gefühl am Morgen" (2005).

Photo © Jürgen Bauer
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