Nothing but Ghosts

Nothing but Ghosts

Judith Hermann

The brilliant second collection of stories from Germany’s answer to Zadie Smith. Judith Hermann’s first collection, ‘The Summer House, Later’, sold 250,000 hardbacks in Germany, and was shortlisted for both the IMPAC award and the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize.

Judith Hermann’s first book, ‘The Summer House, Later’ was described as ‘a book about a certain kind of young woman, trying to get a boyfriend, to get some fun out of life, but with a sense of melancholy and a sense of loneliness that seems to define a generation’.

Now in Hermann’s second collection, ‘Nothing but Ghosts’, that generation has moved on, grown up perhaps, and the women have indeed found boyfriends but the relationships, described here with painstaking honesty, are all on the turn in some way and have passed their first flush of romantic love. We join many of these characters just as they have stopped communicating; the talking has stopped and the women, with their lives in stasis, have become watchful and disappointed and are starting to turn their gaze elsewhere…

Reviews of Nothing but Ghosts

    • ‘Hermann is a reserved and careful writer…Several stories here throw up moments of startling clarity.’ Metro
    • ‘A fascinating writer who, in the short story, had found the perfect form.’ Independent
    • Praise for ‘The Summer House, Later’ (2001):
    • ‘A daringly lyrical collection.’ Oprah Magazine
    • ‘An elegant and perceptive reading on the emptiness that fills our lives. Its author is a master storyteller.’ Independent
    • ‘A collection of striking distinction and poise. Some of the stories touch on brilliance. She can rival the best contemporary exponents of short fiction. Exceptional.’ Sunday Business Post
    • ‘Tales of impressive quality and formidable originality.’ Sunday Times
    • ‘Cool…told without sentimentality, drawing power from the precision of the language and from a laconic style that narrates but refuses to explain.’ TLS