German / Germany
Kränzler, Lisa (text)
Berlin: Suhrkamp 2014. – 175 p.
Coming of age – Mental disorder – Outsider – Love – Death
Rufus is a loaner. His little town causes him claustrophobia, so he wants to leave right after completing high school. Nor does Lilith fit into this dump, because she thinks differently from the average petty bourgeois, whose world ends at their garden fence. The two outsiders become a pair, but Rufus does not succeed in providing Lilith with the support she needs. Lilith, a vulnerable and injured soul, slips out of his grasp. She loses herself in excessive and self-destructive alcohol and drug abuse, and finally dies after a car accident. Rufus can never fully overcome his grief. Lisa Kränzler bluntly scrutinizes the thoughts and feelings of her protagonists, portraying their grief in all its radicalness. While the dynamics of the relationship dominate the first part – narrated from alternating perspectives – the novel progressively seems to be sucked into the abyss of Lilith’s existential anxieties. Following her debut-novel “Nachhinein” (Retrospect), the author has written another challenging novel, which begins where it hurts. (Age: 16+)