An emotional novel that tells us about love, class differences, migration and the transition to adulthood written by one of the new talents of German literature.

The story of Martha and Željko helps Martin Kordić – one of the most interesting voices in new German literature – to talk about love and identity in a formative novel with a classic but fiercely contemporary feel.

Writer Zadie Smith states that “immigrants can no more escape their history than one can escape their shadow.” An idea from which Željko, the protagonist of My Years with Martha, futilely flees throughout the pages of Martin Kordić’s novel.

An emerging talent in today’s new German literature, Kordić has written an emotional book that tells us about love and identity. In it, the author narrates the experience of the children of immigration from a class perspective and asks what we lose when we leave our origins behind.

The story follows the life of Željko, a young man of Croatian descent who believes he finds a mirage of equality and integration in Germany at the end of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st in the complex relationships he establishes with Martha, a university professor much older than him. .

«Today I know that in Germany I have lacked models to guide me, to tell me how I could behave. “We ourselves had to try to become an example for those who came after us, for our nephews, for our children,” confesses the protagonist at the end of this formative novel with a classical but fiercely contemporary tone that explores the limits of love and fine line that separates dedication from selfishness in human relationships.

*Original content provided by the publisher

“In this love story everything there was to tell about Germany as a country of immigration, with all its hierarchies, pains and wounds, is told in a charmingly casual and bravely precise way.” Lena Gorelik

«A novel that seems like a love story. In reality, it is a brutal reckoning with Germany. Christian Mayer (Süddeutsche Zeitung)

«Martin Kordić writes about his characters with such tenderness that I immediately fell in love with Željko, his family and naturally with Martha. I didn’t want the story to ever end and as it progressed it took me longer and longer to read. An incredibly beautiful novel! Petra Hartlieb

«What a love story. (…) agile language, comic scenes and above all endless tension.» Claudia Ingenhoven (MDR Kultur)

«Full of surprises, poetry and discreet complexity. It is one of the best novels of the season.” Martin Oehlen (Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger)

«My years with Martha is clearly part of a still young tradition of novels that, finally, analyze the reality of the life of the children of immigrants from the former Federal Republic of Germany.» Nina Pain (taz)


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