!!> PDF / Epub ☀ On a Day Like This ✈ Author Peter Stamm – Pmgtest.info

On a Day Like This I think this author is better at writing short stories I read this book because of a collection of short stories contained in his book We re Flying I have Agnes and plan to read it, but I hope it s better than On a Day Like This ODLT seemed to ramble on and switch characters in a way that wasn t really believable Others might like it, but it wasn t my cup of tea. This is just my second novel by Peter Stamm but he might become my favorite contemporary author writing in German His stories are unexceptional, the characters are average people experiencing everyday occurences But there are cracks in the surface The ordinary settled life is an illusion Behind the curtain, unrest and dissatisfaction broods On a day like this, any day, the cracks will burst Here, Andreas gives up his position as a teacher, sells his apartment and starts on a journey to com This is just my second novel by Peter Stamm but he might become my favorite contemporary author writing in German His stories are unexceptional, the characters are average people experiencing everyday occurences But there are cracks in the surface The ordinary settled life is an illusion Behind the curtain, unrest and dissatisfaction broods On a day like this, any day, the cracks will burst Here, Andreas gives up his position as a teacher, sells his apartment and starts on a journey to come to terms with his past, specifically with an unresolved early love when an unspecified growth is discovered in his lung.His unbound lifestyle contrasts with those of his so called friends and his brother, settled with families and obligations Neither their nor Andreas life are drafted as desirable There s no ultimate solution to the ongoing search for happiness Most stopped to search, or never searched at all Even when Andreas apparent dream comes true, it s not the end but just another start There s a zen like quality to the resolution, the way is the reward Don t stop on the way.This is a book I can relate to, from an author who seems to think about the same things as I do, who wrote this book when he was about my age The perfect book at the right time for my personal situation A New Novel Of Artful Understatement About Mortality, Estrangement, And The Absurdity Of Life From The Acclaimed Author Of Unformed Landscape And In Strange GardensOn A Day Like Any Other, Andreas Changes His Life When A Routine Doctor S Visit Leads To An Unexpected Prognosis, A Great Yearning Takes Hold Of Him But Who Can Tell If It Is Homesickness Or Wanderlust Andreas Leaves Everything Behind, Sells His Paris Apartment Cuts Off All Social Ties Quits His Teaching Job And Waves Goodbye To His Days Spent Idly Sitting In Cafes To Look For A Woman He Once Loved, Half A Lifetime Ago The Monotony Of Days Has Been Keeping Him In Check Now He Hopes For A Miracle And For A New Beginning Andreas Travels Lead Him Back To The Province Of His Youth, Back To His Hometown In Switzerland Where He Returns To Familiar Streets, Where His Brother Still Lives In Their Childhood Home, And Where Fabienne, A Woman He Was Obsessed With In His Youth, Visits The Same Lake They Once Swam In Together Andreas, Still Consumed With Longing For His Lost Love And Blinded By The Uncertainty Of His Future, Is Tormented By The Question Of What Might Have Been If Things Had Happened Differently Peter Stamm Has Been Praised As A Stylistic Ascetic And His Prose As Distinguished By Lapidary Expression, Telegraphic Terseness, And Finely Tuned Sensitivity Bookforum In On A Day Like This, Stamm S Unobtrusive Observational Style Allows Us To Journey With Our Antihero Through His Crises Of Banality, Of Living In His Empty World, And The Realization That Life Is Finite That One Must Live It, As Long As That Is PossiblePraise For Unformed Landscape Sensitive And Unnerving An Uncommonly Intimate Work, One That Will Remind The Reader Of His Or Her Own Lived Experience With A Greater Intensity Than Many Of The Books That Are Published Right Here At Home The New Republic Online If Albert Camus Had Lived In An Age When People In Remote Norwegian Fishing Villages Had E Mail, He Might Have Written A Novel Like This The New Yorker Unformed Landscape Has A Refreshing Purity, A Lack Of Delusion, A Lack Of Hype Los Angeles Times Only Connect On second thoughts, don t bother.There can be something bracing about Peter Stamm s ice cold objectivity Andreas loved the empty mornings when he would stand by the window with a cup of coffee in one hand and a cigarette in the other, and stare down at the small, tidy courtyard, and think of nothing except what was there in front of him And so this 2006 novel begins, with a fortyish bachelor, Swiss like the author, who lives in a Paris apartment and commutes daily to a high sch Only Connect On second thoughts, don t bother.There can be something bracing about Peter Stamm s ice cold objectivity Andreas loved the empty mornings when he would stand by the window with a cup of coffee in one hand and a cigarette in the other, and stare down at the small, tidy courtyard, and think of nothing except what was there in front of him And so this 2006 novel begins, with a fortyish bachelor, Swiss like the author, who lives in a Paris apartment and commutes daily to a high school in the suburbs, where he teaches German He has a couple of women friends, one married, one divorced, whom he sleeps with on occasion with no commitment on either side Then he goes to the doctor with a smoker s cough, and finds he needs a biopsy to investigate a shadow on his lungs.We have been in this emotional territory before with Stamm, most notably with the female protagonist of Unformed Landscape, whose life in the frozen wastes of Northern Norway changes when she decides to take a trip south Andreas is not so compelling a character, and certainly the setting isordinary, but an emotional glaciation like his is the necessary prelude to a thaw Or so I thought.Two things I did not like about the physical book a graceless presentation and a mentitious blurb It is poorly printed, with a tight center binding that hurts ones hands to hold open And it attracts potential readers with a come on that the actual text simply does not support Peter Stamm leads our antihero on a journey through a restorative midlife crisis to the realization that life is finite that one must live it with passion, so long as this is possible Restorative I hardly think so, and there is precious little passion either Andreas conduct after his biopsy is, if anything,coldly dismissive of his friends than he had been before And he reduces his life to almost nothing, giving up his job, selling his apartment and furniture, buying the smallest car a 2cv , and heading back to the Swiss village where he was born.True, he takes along a new young woman who appears to be fond of him, and goes to visit an old flame for whom he had sighed in vain twenty years before, but he allows the two experiences to cancel each other out He visits his brother and sister in law in the old family home, but he has become a virtual stranger to them Eventually, he heads back to France alone, towards an ending that might indicate a tiny movement of the glacier But it is too little too late Why should we connect with him, when he seems unable to make lasting connections with anybody else Well, this book was very depressing, but at the same, I did enjoy it.I appreciate the fact that Stamm set out to write a story, and, while accomplishing this, also wrote about why we turn to stories He wrote about nostalgia in an extremely focused way that I appreciated, and he was careful with his words.11 16 I had rated this 4 stars before, but I changed it to 5 I cannot stop thinking about this book. At first, I was reminded of the main character in Night Train to Lisbon, whom I liked Can t give this one three stars, because I went from feeling neutral about Andreas here, to not liking him much by the end Setting and description are well done, but I guess it s a matter of lacking European sensibility rather than a translation issue I feel Not interested in readingby this author At first, I was reminded of the main character in Night Train to Lisbon, whom I liked Can t give this one three stars, because I went from feeling neutral about Andreas here, to not liking him much by the end Setting and description are well done, but I guess it s a matter of lacking European sensibility rather than a translation issue I feel Not interested in readingby this author Everything would be much easier if you could see yourself as a victim, he thought, a victim of your childhood, of fate, of the people you had grown up among, and finally too, as victim of illness But in order to feel himself a victim, he had to believe in the possibility of another, better life Andreas believed in nothing but chance He loved the curious coincidences and repetitions that life threw up, against all logic He loved the surprising patterns that came about in the sky, or on a bo Everything would be much easier if you could see yourself as a victim, he thought, a victim of your childhood, of fate, of the people you had grown up among, and finally too, as victim of illness But in order to feel himself a victim, he had to believe in the possibility of another, better life Andreas believed in nothing but chance He loved the curious coincidences and repetitions that life threw up, against all logic He loved the surprising patterns that came about in the sky, or on a body of water or in the shade of a tree, the continual tiny adjustments in the same overall context Nadia called in nihilism his own word for it was modesty This is exactly how this whole book goes you think it s going to be a pitiful sad story filled with regret about a man who has never married or had a family, never really been in a committed relationship or even had a deep friend, facing a possible fatal diagnosis and yet, and yet, it s just not that sad and pitiful It always turns Andreas seems to find enough joy, enough meaning, even as he contemplates a world in which no one will miss him in or even remember him in twenty years He is not terribly likeable not particularly nice to the women he has relations with but at some level endearingly honest and vulnerable I kept wanting to not like Andreas, or to find the book boring, but it just totally hooked me in Once again I am a total sucker for a well developed sense of place, thoughtful language, and a well developed, reflective character Stramm delivers all of this I m a fan of Peter Stamm s short stories especially the collection, We re Flying , and thought I d try some longer fiction This novel reads quickly and feels almost like a long short story Andreas, a teacher of German in a school outside Paris, is floating through his life when he s caught unaware by a medical diagnosis Fearful of the results, he opts to sever his connections with the school and his life, and sets himself off on a course of reckoning with a past that s never been far from hi I m a fan of Peter Stamm s short stories especially the collection, We re Flying , and thought I d try some longer fiction This novel reads quickly and feels almost like a long short story Andreas, a teacher of German in a school outside Paris, is floating through his life when he s caught unaware by a medical diagnosis Fearful of the results, he opts to sever his connections with the school and his life, and sets himself off on a course of reckoning with a past that s never been far from his thoughts.The story s clear and engaging, though it feels a little monotone It s hard to tell whether that s Andreas bleeding into the narrative or just Stamm s writing style in a longer piece I certainly felt infuriated by Andreas at points, which I think we re meant to do, but it s hard to get too excited about a middle aged man waffling over the decision to live his life or not The cover flap describes him as an anti hero, and therein lies the key, I suppose I ll have to give another Stamm novel a try next The challenge with this novel is to care The story suggests the main character, Andreas, is about forty He spent eighteen years in Paris teaching and now he wonders why His life has been empty, without purpose or affect He is handsome so he has had ample sex but no emotional ties No ties of any sort Adrift And he doesn t much care So why should we Peter Stamm s writing is spare Understated No lush descriptions No violent outbursts Everything flows very smoothly But watching that sle The challenge with this novel is to care The story suggests the main character, Andreas, is about forty He spent eighteen years in Paris teaching and now he wonders why His life has been empty, without purpose or affect He is handsome so he has had ample sex but no emotional ties No ties of any sort Adrift And he doesn t much care So why should we Peter Stamm s writing is spare Understated No lush descriptions No violent outbursts Everything flows very smoothly But watching that sleek surface flow past calm, controlled we become like Andreas indifferent In fiction, as in life, emotion is two thirds of it and if not two thirds, then half And if not half, then you begin to wonder whether you have lived, whether there is a story here after all.The narrative is third person We hear what people think not much And what they feel even less Andreas has a crisis in a mild way And he takes drastic action in a calm way Everything is in keeping with what we have already seen It is all beyond arm s length It is across the street You can t touch the characters They move in sight but out of reach And barely within hearing They are no one you know Or are likely to care about.Ibsen said that when he first started a play the characters were like people he had seen in a railway station After further work on the play the characters were like people he had known for a few weeks And after yetwork when the play was done the characters were like intimate friends.Peter Stamm should have worked on this novel until the characters became like intimate friends Then he should have shown them to us in that light And, if the answer is that he did and they are if this is who Andreas and the others are in the full flat, indifferent, shallow then why on earth should we care A novel about a Swiss native, Andreas, in his 40 s who teaches and lives in Paris In the first chapter his girlfriend comments on his emptiness Her observation is supported as we learnabout his life he lives in a sparse apartment, has few friends, is detached from his job, has lost contact with his brother and brother s family who are his only living relatives.Reading this I was reminded of the protagonist in the Stranger which is reinforced when Andreas gives a book by Camus as a birt A novel about a Swiss native, Andreas, in his 40 s who teaches and lives in Paris In the first chapter his girlfriend comments on his emptiness Her observation is supported as we learnabout his life he lives in a sparse apartment, has few friends, is detached from his job, has lost contact with his brother and brother s family who are his only living relatives.Reading this I was reminded of the protagonist in the Stranger which is reinforced when Andreas gives a book by Camus as a birthday present in the only party he actually attends in the book.Andreas picks up a novel about a love between a student and an au pair which is strikingly similar with his experience as a student when he fell in love with an au pair This prompts a series of flashbacks while at the same time he learns he may have cancer This leads him to wonder if his failure to act on his one love caused his life of emptiness while at the same time confronting the possibility of his life being cut short by cancer At this time he begins a relationship with a student teacher who may be the most sympathetic character in the book who of course is the same age as he was when he made his life altering choice not to commit to the au pair.A very interesting, thought provoking read I was initially disappointed in its ambigious ending but I eventually appreciated the ending, the ambuigity reflects Andreas s life and the role of the reader in deciding how to interpret his life and this book


About the Author: Peter Stamm

Peter Stamm grew up in Weinfelden in the canton of Thurgau the son of an accountant After completing primary and secondary school he spent three years as an apprentice accountant and then 5 as an accountant He then chose to go back to school at the University of Zurich taking courses in a variety of fields including English studies, Business informatics, Psychology, and Psychopathology During this time he also worked as an intern at a psychiatric clinic After living for a time in New York, Paris, and Scandinavia he settled down in 1990 as a writer and freelance journalist in Zurich He wrote articles for, among others, the Neue Z rcher Zeitung, the Tages Anzeiger, Die Weltwoche, and the satirical newspaper Nebelspalter Since 1997 he has belonged to the editorial staff of the quarterly literary magazine Entw rfe f r Literatur He lives in Winterthur.


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