The Survivors
Die Überlebten

hinrich von haaren die ueberlebten
August 2010 / 183pp

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.


Funny and moving, believable yet surprising, The Survivors is a superb debut from a master storyteller.

‘On a Dark Lake’ features a group of tourists on a cruise round Lake Nasser. Figures emerge, relationships develop, and just as the reader is beginning to think that – despite the evocative sense of place, precise observation of character, and deft delineation of dynamics – holidays are, well, a bit boring, someone dies. Surprising reactions ensue in the now acutely awkward atmosphere.

In ‘The Air in Your Bones’, the impulsive Astrid meets the phlegmatic Lawrence, and they begin a relationship. He charms her dog Clive, but in a rare moment of exuberance Lawrence gets carried away playing with Clive and the dog is killed by a car. Astrid never really forgives Lawrence, and, having buried Clive on Hampstead Heath, she decides to go travelling – on her own.

‘The Potential of Love’ centres around an imbalanced ménage à trois in London. Jane and the male narrator become obsessed with Trip, an older man of considerable charisma and wealth. Suspicion, jealousy and deceit abound, yet finally the narrator’s mind is opened to the reality of desire and potential of love.

On the evidence of these wonderful short stories, economical and ambivalent, von Haaren’s first novel will be eagerly anticipated.

press quotes

‘Whether a tour group in Egypt or a ménage à trois in London – the psycho-sexual dimensions of love are explored. A real bounty and a fascinating read.’
– Die Lesefrucht

about the author

Hinrich von Haaren was born in 1964 in Bremerhaven and studied German literature in Berlin. His radio plays have been broadcast on Radio Bremen and Ostdeutscher Rundfunk, which also awarded him the Radio Play Prize. Von Haaren currently lives in London.

rights information

Luftschacht Verlag GmbH
Tel: +43 699 1958 5048
Contact: Stefan Buchberger 

Luftschacht Verlag is both financially and politically independent. Its program includes fiction, narrative prose that transcends particular genres, children’s books, illustrated books and graphic novels.

translation assistance

Applications should be made to the Goethe-Institut.

share this recommendation

Share this on twitter, facebook or via mail.

All recommendations from Spring 2011