Author(s): W. G. Sebald
A special tenth-anniversary edition of W.G. Sebald's modern classic, "Austerlitz", with a new introduction by James Wood. In 1939, five-year-old Jacques Austerlitz is sent to England on a Kindertransport and placed with foster parents. This childless couple promptly erase from the boy all knowledge of his identity and he grows up ignorant of his past. Later in life, after a career as an architectural historian, Austerlitz - having avoided all clues that might point to his origin - finds the past returning to haunt him and he is forced to explore what happened fifty years before. Austerlitz is W.G. Sebald's melancholic masterpiece. "Mesmeric, haunting and heartbreakingly tragic. Simply no other writer is writing or thinking on the same level as Sebald." (Eileen Battersby, "Irish Times"). "Greatness in literature is still possible." ("John Banville", "Irish Times", "Books of the Year"). "A work of obvious genius." ("Literary Review"). "A fusion of the mystical and the solid...His art is a form of justice - there can be, I think, no higher aim." ("Evening Standard"). "Spellbindingly accomplished; a work of art." ("The Times Literary Supplement"). "I have never read a book that provides such a powerful account of the devastation wrought by the dispersal of the Jews from Prague and their treatment by the Nazis." ("Observer"). "A great book by a great writer." (Boyd Tonkin, "Independent"). W. G. Sebald was born in Germany in 1944 and settled permanently in England in 1970, where he was Professor of European Literature at the University of East Anglia until his death in 2001. He is the author of four works of fiction: "The Emigrants", which won the Berlin Literature Prize, the Heinrich Heine Prize, and the Joseph Breitbach Prize; "The Rings of Saturn; Vertigo; and Austerlitz", which was awarded the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award. Alongside this stand books of poetry "For Years Now", "After Nature", "Unrecounted", and "Across the Land and the Water", and the non-fiction books "On the Natural History of Destruction" and "Campo Santo".
'A work of obvious genius and an extraordinary writer way above most of his contemporaries' - Literary Review
'Mesmeric, haunting and heartbreakingly tragic. Simply no other writer is writing or thinking on the same level as Sebald. A profound, alluring masterwork of singular genius' - Eileen Battersby, Irish Times
'An extraordinary, mesmeric story and one of the most haunting books of the year' - Esther Freud, Observer
'Anyone with a serious interest in fiction should read Sebald' - John Lanchester, Daily Telegraph
W.G. Sebald is one of very few German writers of the last few decades to have attracted both a broad readership in the UK and an international following of journalists and scholars alike. He has proved a huge inspiration not just to younger writers but also to artists and photographers fascinated by the use of imagery and images in his work. His books include The Emigrants, The Rings of Saturn and After Nature.