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Die Mittagsfrau
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Die Mittagsfrau

3.41  ·  Rating details ·  1,308 Ratings  ·  167 Reviews
Eine idyllische Kindheit in der Lausitz am Vorabend des ersten Weltkriegs, das Berlin der goldenen Zwanziger, die große Liebe: So könnte das Glück klingen, denkt Helene. Aber steht ihr die Welt wirklich offen? Helene glaubt unerschütterlich daran, folgt ihren Träumen und lebt ihre Gefühle - auch gegen die Konventionen einer zunehmend unerbittlichen Zeit. Dann folgt der zwe ...more
Paperback, 429 pages
Published 2009 by Fischer-Taschenbuch-Verlag (first published 2007)
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Saleh MoonWalker
Onvan : The Blindness of the Heart - Nevisande : Julia Franck - ISBN : - ISBN13 : - Dar 416 Safhe - Saal e Chap : 2007
K.D. Absolutely
Apr 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to K.D. by: 1001 Book You Must Read Before You Die (2010)
The author, German novelist Julia Franck (born 1970) was 39 years old when this book, The Blind Side of the Heart was first published in German language. Its milieu is Germany in between the two world wars and I could not help but be amazed how intricate Franck was able to weave her story considering that she was not born yet at that time. It was the same awe that I had, almost a decade ago, while reading Birdsong: A Novel of Love and War about French trench warfare when its author, Sebastian Fa ...more
In the original German version, so I’ve been told, the title of this book is Die Mittagsfrau, or “The Noonday Witch”. According to legend, the witch appears in the heat of day to spirit away children from their distracted parents. Those who are able to engage the witch in a short conversation find that her witch-like powers evaporate.

In Julia Franck’s brilliant English version (translated by the very talented Anthea Bell), Helene gradually retreats into silence and passivity, losing her ability
Translated from the German by Anthea Bell

Winner of the German Book Prize

Most novels that explore the events of the Holocaust focus on the ‘Before’ and ‘After’-showing the events chronologically and the resulting impact. However, The Blindness of the Heart takes a reverse approach and begins by revealing a disturbing ‘After’: a young woman abandons her young son at a train station and disappears. We see how they’ve lived in horror for months, but his abandonment is still shocking. Then the author
Jul 24, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Die Mittagsfrau ist eines jener Bücher, vor denen ich mich ganz lang gedrückt habe, mich störte der Hype um das Buch und vor allem um die Autorin.

Tatsächlich kann ich nicht genau beschreiben, was an dem Buch so gut funktioniert, aber ich konnte es immer kaum erwarten, weiterlesen zu können.

Wer es lesen will, sollte übrigens unbedingt NICHT den Klappentext lesen, da wird nämlich etwas ganz Wesentliches verraten.

Zum Inhalt schweige ich mich hier aus, da man ihn allüberall nachlesen kann, in Tausen
Aug 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read through some of the reviews for this book. I'm always amazed at what some readers think. Books, clearly, touch us in different ways. This book has been described as disturbing, haunting, and shocking. It is all of those and more. What moved me about this book was the evolution of the character Helene as she changed in response to tragic events, how she moves from a bright, energetic, ambitious girl to a cold, distant, lonely, cruel, burdened mother. The contrast between the girl's outlook ...more
Everyone seems to love this book. It's being compared with Anna Karenina and Madame Bovary, but I don't see it. The story was gripping, but I didn't like any of the characters, not even the little boy. I couldn't care less about this woman and I was angry that she repeated her own mother's faults. I did finish it because it was for my bookclub, but if it wasn't for that I wouldn't have finished it.
I really don't mind drama in a book, terrible things happen, but I at least want to sympathize wit
Roger Brunyate
May 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Why One Writes

You often see reviewers praising a book with the words "this is why one reads." Here is a book that turns upon a different question: why the author writes. This is my second attempt at a review of it, and I think my reasons for making the change are important. I would not want other readers to be led astray by Amazon's marketing as I was when I first read it, and expect a novel about moral degeneration in Germany during the interwar years, only to criticize the author for not succe
Friederike Knabe
Oct 17, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: german-lit
Julia Franck's novel, DIE MITTAGSFRAU, published in English under the title "Blindness of the Heart: A Novel" starts dramatically with a Prologue in which a young mother leaves her seven-year old son at a remote railway station in eastern Germany and disappears... The time is 1945, the war has ended and the two have to flee west ahead of Soviet troops taking over the city. The author, captivated by her own father's childhood trauma, took the search for possible explanations for her grandmother's ...more
Jul 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
Ja natürlich ist das ein grausames Buch. Es schildert den Lebensweg einer Frau, die so gebrochen ist, dass sie ihren kleinen Sohn aussetzt (auch wenn sie sich einredet dabei dem Sohn Gutes zu tun, doch eigentlich nur, um sich selbst zu bestrafen?). Was daran langatmig sein soll? Es ist unheimlich detailliert geschrieben, präzise, so klinisch, dass es einen fast schon ekelt. Da ist kein Moment in dieser erdachten Biographie, den man auslassen sollte. Am Ende ging es mir beinahe zu hastig. Daher 4 ...more
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