Petty Cash
Kleine Kassa

kleine kassa lechner
Residenz Verlag
February 2014 / 264pp
  • Longlisted for the German Book Prize 2014

This book is outside of the five-year window for guaranteed assistance with English language translation. We suggest getting in touch with the relevant funding body for an informal conversation about the possibility of support. Please refer to to our  recommendations page for books that are currently covered by our funding guarantee.


Georg’s boss has sent him on a bus journey to deliver a suitcase of dirty money to a business associate. Georg has performed such missions before and has always acquitted himself well. But on this occasion he sees a billboard with what he thinks is a picture of his former girlfriend and, on a sudden impulse, gets off the bus. The picture turns out to be of somebody else, but it is too late now – Georg’s inexorable slide into the life of a homeless outlaw has begun. 

He flees through a wood where he comes across a dead body, a man who has been shot through the head. Now a murder suspect as well as a thief, Georg goes on the run with the suitcase, disguising himself with a set of hair extensions. Although Georg’s intention is always to leave, he only ever manages to stumble from one small town to the next and from one absurdist encounter to another. He finally ends up back at the bus stop where his bizarre journey began, without ever having managed to open the suitcase which was the source of all the trouble. 

Petty Cash takes readers on a playful, fast-paced romp through a series of literary genres – often thriller-like, but with some surreal comedy thrown in.

press quotes

‘Yes, there are still mature debuts of great linguistic talent with a strong and convincing voice. […] This Bildungsroman is told in a refreshing and profound manner.’– FAZ

about the author

Martin Lechner was born in 1974 and studied philosophy and German literature at Potsdam University. He has published numerous texts in publications including Bella triste, manuskripte, and Edit. Martin Lechner lives and works in Berlin. Kleine Kassa is his first novel.

Previous works include:
Covering Onetti (2009); Bilder einer Heimfahrt (2005)

rights information

Residenz Verlag
Contact: Nina Stren
Tel: +43 2742 802-1411

Residenz Verlag is one of Austria’s leading publishers of fiction, non-fiction and children’s books.

translation assistance

Applications should be made to the Goethe-Institut.

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