Book of the Week
Göran Rosenberg: ETT KORT UPPEHÅLL PÅ VÄGEN FRÅN AUSCHWITZ
Albert Bonniers Förlag · Stockholm, 2012 · 292 pages
A SHORT STOP ON THE ROAD FROM AUSCHWITZ
In Sweden more than 90.000 copies sold (Dec '12), foreign rights to USA, UK, Germany, Italy, France, The Netherlands, Israel, Denmark, Norway and Poland
The book is an exploration of memory; the memory of a child; the memory of a father; the memory of a place and time.
The place is a small industrial town in Sweden. The time is post-war. The father has survived the ghetto of Lódz and Auschwitz and the slave camps and the death transports and is transferred to Sweden by the Red Cross in the summer of 1945.
The author is the child travelling in his father’s footsteps, talking to him, walking with him, remembering and chronicling his strenuous efforts to make a new life in a new world.
The author is the child conquering this world and making it his own. The father is the survivor who begins the world anew in the deepening shadows of a world that is no more.
Too soon a chasm opens between the world of the child and the world of the father.
The world of shadows invade the world of optimism, progress and collective oblivion.
The author says:
"First of all this is not an "Auschwitz"-book, believe me, I have read them all and I had neither the intention nor the recklessness to write another one. This is a book about a small child growing up with a father who is a survivor of Auschwitz (and Lodz ghetto etc). The mother is too, but for many reasons I have chosen to make my father the protagonist. It is the place, it is the child, it is the father, it is the dark shadows and the bright lights in a small industrial town south of Stockholm in postwar Sweden, it is the road from Auschwitz. The book is written in present tense. The child discovers the world and walks alongside his father and speaks to him, and follow in his steps until their worlds part and his falls apart. I do understand now that this is a powerful book (writers rarely know these things in advance) and the books is in its fourth printing in less than two months, topping the sales charts and the critics' list and what have you. It is a literary book, language and style is everything”.
„A masterful childhood memoir. Rosenberg writes with the assertive power of a novel, although this story is for real.“ - Aftonbladet
Winner of the August Prize 2012, Sweden's most important literary prize.
Link: Reviews in German
Rosenberg has worked at Sveriges Radio and Sveriges Television; 1979–85 he was host and reporter of the actuality-program Magasinet.
In 1990 he founded the magazine Moderna Tider which he was editor-in-chief of until 1999, and he also hosted the actuality-program with the same name which was broadcast in TV3. 1991–2011 he worked as columnist at Dagens Nyheter.
He workes as honorary degree at the University of Gothenburg.