Headhunter

Uwe Timm, Author, Peter Tegel, Translator, Peter Tegel, Foreword by New Directions Publishing Corporation $22.95 (402p) ISBN 978-0-8112-1254-0
Large-scale embezzlement finds a memorable champion in the protagonist and narrator of this complex, intriguing novel originally published in Germany in 1991. After fleeing Hamburg and a prison sentence for bilking investors out of millions, middle-aged commodities trader Peter Walter settles with his wife and daughter into a luxurious hideout in Marbella, Spain, where he records his life story on a laptop computer. From his youth as a fatherless child in Hamburg's seedy Grosse Trampgang through his step-by-step successes selling magazines, life insurance, paper and finally investments, Walter frankly and philosophically recounts his dogged pursuit of wealth and privilege. He also takes time out to continue his ongoing study of Easter Island and play an occasional tennis game with his partner and fellow fugitive, Dembrowski. Beneath Walter's wry self-assurance, this well-crafted, anecdotal narrative explores literary, economic and existential questions, delivering vivid characterizations and engaging, humorous scenarios at the same time. Tegel's translation seems awkward in spots but conveys Timm's subtly layered tone and implications. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/03/1994
Release date: 01/01/1994
Genre: Fiction
Paperback - 416 pages - 978-0-8112-1789-7
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