The Berlin Stories

The Berlin Stories

Book - 2008
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First published in the 1930s,The Berlin Stories contains two astonishing related novels,The Last of Mr. Norris andGoodbye to Berlin, which are recognized today as classics of modern fiction. Isherwood magnificently captures 1931 Berlin: charming, with its avenues and cafés; marvelously grotesque, with its nightlife and dreamers; dangerous, with its vice and intrigue; powerful and seedy, with its mobs and millionaires--this is the period when Hitler was beginning his move to power.The Berlin Stories is inhabited by a wealth of characters: the unforgettable Sally Bowles, whose misadventures in the demimonde were popularized on the American stage and screen by Julie Harris inI Am A Camera and Liza Minnelli inCabaret; Mr. Norris, the improbable old debauchee mysteriously caught between the Nazis and the Communists; plump Fräulein Schroeder, who thinks an operation to reduce the scale of her Büste might relieve her heart palpitations; and the distinguished and doomed Jewish family, the Landauers.
Publisher: New York : New Directions Pub., [2008]
Copyright Date: ©2008
ISBN: 9780811218047
Branch Call Number: FIC ISHERWO 2008
Characteristics: xxi, 191 pages, 207 pages ; 21 cm


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Jan 11, 2017

Having seen the movie Cabaret many years ago, I was interested to find that it was based on this book. As the author paints a picture of life in Berlin in the early 1930s, his stories also highlight the slow shift from the random acts of vandalism against Jews to more physical attacks to a sense of worse to come as people begin to disappear. An important reminder of how ignoring intolerance can help it grow. A part of Hitler's early time in Germany that I knew little about.

Jun 23, 2015

A novel from another time. I didn't learn much about Berlin in this book. It pretty much deals with people and their relationships toward each other. Pretty dull stuff. Very static.

Mar 20, 2015

This book contains two novels. "The Last of Mr. Norris", first published in 1935, is based on Gerald Hamilton, "the wickedest man in Europe". It tells the story of a personal relationship set against the rise of Hitler. "Good-bye to Berlin" was first published in 1939. It opens with "I am a camera, with its shutter open", and indeed Isherwood chronicles his life and experiences in Berlin beginning in 1930. It includes a profile of Sally Bowles (Cabaret). It is interesting to read what was being written before the rise of Hitler and the book certainly evokes this period. A classic.

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