The Pages

By Hugo Hamilton

‘A rich, strange book. Very truthful and moving’ Tessa Hadley
A terrific, engrossing novel’ Roddy Doyle

‘A masterpiece’ Sebastian Barry

The new novel about the transformative power of art, the weight of history and the strange connection we make with one another from the author of The Speckled People.

Narrated in the voice of Joseph Roth’s masterpiece Rebellion, Hugo Hamilton’s stunning, formally inventive new novel tells the life story of that book, initially rescued from the Nazi book-burning in Berlin in May 1933. It recounts the life of its Austrian-Jewish author, a writer on the run, and his intriguing wife Friederike who fell victim to mental illness.

And it tells a multitude of other stories: of Andreas Pum, a barrel-organ player down on his luck; of a young German American woman who finds a small map drawn by hand on its own blank page in the back, a thrilling mystery which will lead her to Berlin, the book’s birthplace.

The Pages carries profound echoes from the past into the present day and is an inspiring story of the survival of literature over a hundred years.

Format: Hardback
Release Date: 22 Jul 2021
Pages: 304
ISBN: 978-0-00-845166-0
Hugo Hamilton is the author of a bestselling memoir, The Speckled People, the story of his German-Irish childhood in Dublin, where he was prohibited by his revolutionary father from speaking English. He has written nine novels, two memoirs, a collection of short stories and three stage plays. His work has won international awards, including the French Prix Femina étranger, the Italian premio Giuseppe Berto and DAAD scholarship in Berlin. Hamilton is a member of Aosdána and lives in Dublin.

Praise for The Pages: 'Brilliant. It's a lovely, rich, strange book, very truthful and moving, with a beautiful ending' Tessa Hadley -

‘It is … a masterpiece. The Alignment of the destructive forces of the 1920s and the 2020s in this virtuoso work are uncanny and, frankly, alarming. This book simply must be read. It is magnificent’ Sunday Independent ‘A classic Joseph Roth novel takes centre stage in this mix of thriller, treasure hunt and love story…profound and heart-breaking’ Sunday Times -

'A powerful, powerful piece of work. A wounded book making its own book. It brings so much to life - Joseph Roth, Chechnya, Germany, the art of writing, the whole notion of banning books, the lips of the past speaking to the present' Colum McCann 'A terrific, engrossing novel. I love the narrator - such a great character - and the structure is clever and carefully woven, and very satisfying' Roddy Doyle 'An ingenious conceit' John Banville 'A masterpiece. Full of great sentences. But also sort of obliteratingly moving, strange, and right' Sebastian Barry -

”'Wonderful. It is as if Hugo Hamilton has invented a new form” - Neil Jordan, author of Carnivalesque

”'Although ideas of memory, legacy and repetition — the indelible imprints of history — fill The Pages, it moves with a fast and fluid gait … It reminds us that, even in an age when people 'live in a rush to forget' (Roth’s words), we must read the book of the past in order to understand the present” - Boyd Tonkin, Financial Times

”'The form itself - a novel narrated by a novel - is so cunningly realised that it’s accepted almost immediately. It also inspires the thought: why are more novels not told like this? … it’s a fascinating work of real depth that combines biography, fiction and history to create a manifesto for the importance of literature in the times of political dismay” - Business Post