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3.99  ·  Rating details ·  14,915 ratings  ·  616 reviews
»Komm nach Schwarzkollm in die Mühle, es wird nicht zu deinem Schaden sein!« Immer wieder hört Krabat, der vierzehnjährige Waisenjunge, im Traum diese Worte - und neugierig macht er sich auf den Weg. Es scheint ein großes Geheimnis um diese Mühle im Koselbruch zu geben, und Geheimnisvolles geschieht auch, sobald Krabat dort eintrifft, um sich als Lehrling zu verdingen ...
Paperback, großdruck, ungekürzt, 350 pages
Published 2008 by Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag (first published 1971)
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Average rating 3.99  · 
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 ·  14,915 ratings  ·  616 reviews

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Excuse me for sounding smug, but I have managed to read a book in German. A real book, 250 pages long with no pictures. And, unlike earlier attempts, I did not cheat in any way: there was no accompanying parallel text, I didn't look anything up in a dictionary and I hadn't previously read it in another language. There is, to say the least, ample room left for improvement; but based on previous experience with learning languages, I think I've now reached the point where I can continue to progress ...more
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
Krabat has dreams of a near-by mill. The pull is too strong and he ends up going there. The Master takes him in and he becomes that needed twelfth to keep the mill going. That mill is not just a mill though. On Fridays they are taught the black arts by the master.

I love folk/fairy tales and expected to be crazy over this book. I don't know if it was my mood at the time of reading or something for me being lost in the translation, but it was just an okay book.

I finished it last night and it's al
Aug 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm not sure in how far this book is known outside of the German speaking countries, but I decided to give it a rather detailed review, since I believe it might be a valuable read in any case.

I've just re-read this childhood classic of mine which is a must read of German young adult literature. The first time I got in contact with it was at school where it was part of my German curriculum. Otfried Preußler was mainly known (by me) as an author of German children's books, many of which have been
Dec 13, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chapter-books
As I'm rereading my favorite books from childhood, I find myself having to reset my rating system. After reading The Satanic Mill, for instance, I see that some other books I noted as 5 stars are really 4, and some 4 stars are really 3.

This book is flat out good. For a book about good and evil it's free of saccahrine and moralizing. Economically written and tightly plotted, there aren't anvils falling on your head indicating where the story is going.

And somehow the lack of flowery description m
Hank Horse
Jun 14, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya-kids
A spooky and humane classic.

Our young orphan Krabat apprentices at a mill, which turns out to be a magic school far more sinister than Hogwarts.

Essentially a fairy tale, the story resonates on many levels.
One of the things I love about it is the way Ottfried Preussler portrays the world of magic as having limits. The powerful and despotic master at the mill has his own master in turn...The logic of the story is carefully constructed, and every action and development has consequences.

Though it
A re-read. Brilliant.
When I was ten years old, I had an entire shelf called the "Boring Red Book Shelf." It was full of all these middle-grade New York Review books with their signature red spines. I took one look at them and declared them boring, then went off to read my fairy books. A year later, I came back, grown out of princesses and run out of unread novels. I looked at them again and left to read The Sisters Grimm.

One day, I was bored out of my mind and finally decided to give them a try. That was a good dec
'Krabat' as a story is very dear to me although I never read the book. But I am familiar with the movie based on the book and I've seen numerous theatrical adaptions in the last years.

Supposedly, a children's book 'Krabat' is the rather dark story of a young boy with said name. Krabat is an orphan facing a dire faith in 17th century Germany. One day he feels the pull of a nearby mill and joins the master as an apprentice. In addition to learning the trade of the mill, the master also teaches hi
Oct 05, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children, ya
When I read that this book had been an inspiration for the likes of writers Cornelia Funke and Neil Gaiman, my curiosity was piqued. The book appeared in German in 1971 and was translated into English soon after. It was re-released this year by New York Review of Books in their collection of classic children's titles.
The author grew up in a Bohemian town that was annexed, as part of the Sudetenland, by Hitler. He was drafted into the German military in 1944 and sent to fight on the Eastern front
Rebecca Maye Holiday
I find it difficult to get into some older-style fantasy novels, but The Satanic Mill is definitely a special case with its 16th Century German scene. By the way, don't be put off by the "Satan" in the title; this is not a book promoting satanism or anything like that. This book is instead a powerful and unforgettable classic about avoiding darkness and finding the courage to escape something you know is wrong. It reminded me a lot of the plot to the Studio Ghibli film Spirited Away, but with it ...more
*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.*

Krabat is a young boy who is strangely compelled to travel to an old Mill, once there he becomes an apprentice to the miller and his other workers. This is no ordinary mill and Krabat learns that the master uses the mill to teach black magic and that once you become a journeyman it is almost impossible to leave. Krabat becomes a model pupil but also dreams of life away from the mill and the often
Marjolein (UrlPhantomhive)
Read all my reviews on

Alternative Title: The Satanic Mill

When I started reading it the story felt somewhat familiar. It was only then that I realised this book had been translated into Dutch a long time ago (as De Meester van de Zwarte Molen) and that many of my friends had read this while we were young.

And it makes for a perfect children's story. Krabat gets to work in a mill, but soon finds out the Master is training them in black arts and mysterious thing
Mar 15, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
See, now this is how it's done. Mixed in with the horror, which is seldom graphic, are scenes of comradery among the Master's men, and even of humor about the use of ordinary magic. It's a literary work, too, can be appreciated by scholarly adults as much as enjoyed by children (age 10 and up).

Interesting bit about the use of magic... one could use it for everything but life would get boring then.

Translation seems accurate, is certainly clean & graceful.
Jan 22, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

My first reaction to Krabat was that it was obviously not originally written in English.
I found it difficult to believe it is a children's book because it deals with pretty heavy stuff, namely black magic.

Our Krabat is a 14 year old boy who makes a living out of begging with two other kids. Then he moves to a creepy mill with a terrifying master and 11 other journeymen.

The story has the feel of a folk tale. I was enthralled by the sense of elusiveness con
Apr 30, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to booklady by: Julie
The Satanic Mill is a delightful story with a wicked sounding title. Reading it I was reminded of a Brothers Grimm tale expanded to a full-length book. I’m not sure if that is because of the style of writing, the innocence of the main character, or the old-fashioned names used throughout or something altogether different.

Krabat is a fourteen year old orphan beggar in sixteenth century Germany who stumbles on a mill where he finds conditions too good to be true—at least for his time and place.
Jan 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chilren-s-lit
This is a very frightening book. A child's book? I had tried reading it to my grandchildren, aged 10 and 8, but we all got too frightened by the mill and what was ground on the night of the new moon. I started it again when one grandson was 12 and he was ready for it. He went home before we finished it together so I read on. It really is a wonderful, though darkly frightening book. I recommend for adults and older kids. ...more
Eve Tushnet
Aug 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A truly haunting fantasy for children, with deep friendships, vivid descriptions of nature and hard work--and a storyline about being attracted to true supernatural evil. If you like "folk horror," if you like Catholic children's books (this is one of the most deeply Christian novels I know), if you like "magic school" stories but wish they were more menacing... this may be the best book you've never read.

NB: This really is a lot grimmer than you'd expect from the reading level, and includes the
Klaus Seipp
Jul 29, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
wonderful youth or young adult book. Has such a great atmosphere and likeable characters. I only wished for a gay element in it :)
Yzabel Ginsberg
(I got a copy of this book through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.)

I liked this story well enough: it has the definite markings of a fairy tale, somehow reminding me of old legends from my home area. (I'm not German, but we do have our own tales dealing with similar themes, such as clever journeymen who manage to outsmart supernatural beings, etc.)

There was magic in the atmosphere here—no pun intended: though sorcery was obviously a strong theme, indeed, events and descriptions them
Missy J
Ok, I will try to describe what this novel made me feel. First of all, I read this novel for the first time when I entered secondary school, but I couldn't remember a single thing of the story. But when I started re-reading this last week, the names immediately came back to me. Krabat. Tonda. Michal. Jirko. Lobosch. Lyschko.

The story is set in a magical Germany that is already long gone. That Germany was a diverse place and many languages were spoken besides German. Krabat, the protagonist is a
Oct 31, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pleasently surprised by this one! I remember friends who had to read it in school and hated it - so my expectations were not too high. I ended up disappointed when it ended and wished for a second one! Its a children book, but well written with interesting characters, a nice plot and allways interesting.
One of my favourite books from childhood: Krabat is one of the rare books I could read again and again.
Aug 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first book I ever loved.
Oct 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2020

A fast-paced and dark story about a boy who becomes a miller's apprentice and in addition gets to learn dark magic. Even though it is not very well explained, the lore/magic system of this world is fascinating. I love the idea of the Gevatter coming to the mill to have his bones milled.
Each year a boy is send off to dig his own grave, so the master can live on.
I liked the ending even though it is very rushed.

- extreme insta-love: Krabat and the Kantorka meet like once, and boom,
Luka Peltzer
Apr 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am actually not sure if I had read Krabat before, but I certainly did not remember it to be as good as it is. Otfried Preußler's classic novel is an extremely well constructed tale about the misuse of power and the fleeding nature of youth and innocence. The novel captures a dark and faszinating atmosphere and sets up numerous intruiging mysteries without giving disappointing answers to them. It is pretty dark at times - especially for a childrens novel - but that makes it all the more hauntin ...more
Sep 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Literary Multitudes
I love this book a lot. I re-read it every other year or so around Easter.
And now there is finally a proper audio version of it! So I enjoyed this year's re-read immensely. It's such a gripping book and so very heartfelt. I'm not actually into the topic much (aside form its historical value probably), but I'm still loving this story. Must be Preußler's narrative magic working.
Dec 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book. Reread it after probably 15 years. I remembered so many parts of it and it was once again stunning. The atmosphere in this book is so pressing supported by Preußlers rare descriptions of people and scenery. The strict and similar structure of Krabats years in the mill show how repetitive their life is. Still, the world the author has created manages to fascinate me.
João Sá Nogueira Rodrigues
Amazing book! I'm just sorry I did not read it before and it was not bigger because it ended faster than I wanted ... ...more
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Otfried Preußler (sometimes spelled as Otfried Preussler) was a German children's books author. His best-known works are The Robber Hotzenplotz and The Satanic Mill (Krabat).

He won the Deutscher Jugendliteraturpreis in 1972 for Krabat.
He has sold roughly 50 million copies worldwide.

He was born in Liberec (German: Reichenberg), Czechoslovakia. His forefathers had lived in this area since the 15th c

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