Daniel Kehlmann - You Should Have Left - Quercus

Time remaining

  • -- days
  • -- hours
  • -- minutes
  • -- seconds
Other Formats
  • E-Book £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781786484031
    • Publication date:15 Jun 2017
  • Downloadable audio file £P.O.R.
    More information
    • ISBN:9781786487728
    • Publication date:15 Jun 2017

You Should Have Left

By Daniel Kehlmann

  • Hardback
  • £10.00

A chilling story of marital struggle and psychological disturbance from a master of modern European literature

A thrilling exploration of psychological disturbance and fear from the bestselling and prize-winning author of Measuring the World.


On retreat in the wintry Alps with his family, a writer is optimistic about completing the sequel to his breakthrough film. Nothing to disturb him except the wind whispering around their glassy house. The perfect place to focus.

Intruding on that peace of mind, the demands of his four-year-old daughter splinter open long-simmering arguments with his wife. I love her, he writes in the notebook intended for his script. Why do we fight all the time?

Guilt and expectation strain at his concentration, and strain, too, at the walls of the house. They warp under his watch; at night, looking through the window, he sees impossible reflections on the snow outside.

Then the words start to appear in his notebook; the words he didn't write.

Familiar and forbidding by turns, this is an electrifying experiment in form by one of Europe's boldest writers. The ordinary struggles of a marriage transform, in Kehlmann's hands, into a twisted fable that stays darkly in the mind.

Biographical Notes

Daniel Kehlmann was born in Munich in 1975 and lives in Vienna, Berlin and New York. He has published six novels: Measuring the World, Me & Kaminski Fame, F and You Should Have Left and has won numerous prizes, including the Candide Prize, the Literature Prize of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, the Doderer Prize, The Kleist Prize, the WELT Literature Prize, and the Thomas Mann Prize. Measuring the World was translated into more than forty languages and is one of the biggest successes in post-war German literature.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781786484048
  • Publication date: 15 Jun 2017
  • Page count: 128
  • Imprint: riverrun
Kehlmann is one of the brightest, most pleasure-giving writers at work today, and he manages all this while exploring matters of deep philosophical and intellectual import. — Jonathan Franzen
Daniel Kehlmann is one of the great novelists for making giant themes seem light — Adam Thirlwell
A well-crafted tale about one man unravelling due to forces beyond his control . . . You Should Have Left - part-horror, part-psychodrama - serves up effective shocks and thrills that keep us rapt and on the edge of our seats . . . Kehlmann brings that abyss ever closer and takes his narrator, and his reader, over the edge. — Malcolm Forbes, National
Wry, eerie and increasingly terrifying . . . Daniel Kehlmann is certainly in complete mastery of an entertaining Everyman's postmodernist Gothic guaranteed to unsettle — Eileen Battersby, Irish Times
Kehlmann plays on our manipulated expectations to pull off a rather spectacular hat trick . . . You Should Have Left is a story full of craft and scintillating devices . . . A chilling, curious little book, finely translated, and a promise of innovative maturity for its author — Mika Provata-Carlone, Bookanista
His fiction, conspicuously clever, tends to puncture all the dusty, lugubrious 'worthiness' of canonical literature . . .You Should Have Left [is] a taut and scary novella . . . [with] some high-grade science in it — Hermione Hoby, Sunday Times
It's a masterclass in economical storytelling, meticulously attentive prose and imaginative agility. Kehlmann creates narrative complexity with the deftest of strokes. He's also laugh-out-loud funny. This is both a highly readable novella and a subtly derisive challenge to readers to question the value of their own enjoyment. — Luke Davies, Literary Review
A sense of menacing claustrophobia, as the characters - and readers - teeter on the edge of an inexplicable abyss . . . Using some neat formal trickery and a cleverly suggestive atmosphere, this is a story about a marriage in trouble . . . At first glance there may not seem much to this little book, but it has a funny way with dimensions - its effects are amplified, and they linger. — Daniel Hahn, Spectator
Unsettling, tightly written (in an excellent English translation by Ross Benjamin), psychological suspense and outright, physics-defying horror . . . Kehlmann is a skilled storyteller who takes what could be a run-of-the-mill horror tale and builds it into something more intelligent, metaphysical, concise and perfectly paced as it cranks up the chill . . . Frightening and thought-provoking — Charlie Connelly, New European
This mind-bending novella about a writer losing his marbles contains images that startle and linger . . . The most arresting of the book's chilling moments might do for baby monitors what 'Jaws' did for swimming in the ocean . . . [Kehlmann] manages a few darkly comic flourishes . . . provocative . . . potent . . . pleasantly unsettling — John Williams, New York Times
A beautifully crafted exercise in terror from one of Germany's most celebrated contemporary authors . . . Kehlmann creates a sense of existential dread that transcends the typical ghost story . . . A book to keep you up at night — Kirkus
A ghost story steeped with a sense of existential dread and it will have you rereading the chilling final pages to figure out exactly what might have happened. It is a book that should carry a health warning: read alone at your own risk. — Georgia Godwin, Monocle
MacLehose Press

A Summer of Murder

Oliver Bottini
Authors:
Oliver Bottini

Jo Fletcher Books

Blood Cruise

Mats Strandberg
Authors:
Mats Strandberg

MacLehose Press

A Bond Undone

Jin Yong
Authors:
Jin Yong
MacLehose Press

A Long Night in Paris

Dov Alfon
Authors:
Dov Alfon

When one Israeli citizen disappears from Charles de Gaulle airport with a woman in a red dress, you could put it down to youthful indiscretion. When a second from the same flight is disappeared from his hotel room by a girl with a gun, you might just have a diplomatic crisis on your hands. Enter Colonel Abadi, recently appointed head of the special branch of Unit 8200, Israel's most secretive intelligence service. His only allies are his deputy back in Israel, the dazzling and hot-headed Lieutenant Orianna Talmor, and a hungover French detective, hung out to dry by his superiors. Together they face a squad of ruthless Chinese commandos who have no qualms about leaving Paris littered with bodies. And then there are their enemies in the Paris establishment and the labyrinthine, back-stabbing Israeli intelligence community. All in all, it could be a long night.

riverrun

The Rise and Fall of Great Powers

Tom Rachman
Authors:
Tom Rachman

'Ingenious' New York Times'Mesmerising' The Times'Loveable' Evening StandardNine-year-old Tooly is spirited away from Bangkok by a seductive group of outsiders who take her from city to city across the globe. At twenty, she is wandering the streets of Manhattan with a scribbled-on map, scamming strangers for her shadowy protector, Venn.Now, aged thirty-one, she runs a second-hand bookshop on the Welsh borders and has found peace with her strange upbringing - until she's called to return to New York to see her dying father. Warm, hilarious and fizzing with intelligence, The Rise and Fall of Great Powers is a masterpiece about the search for identity.

riverrun

Friday Black

Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah
Authors:
Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah
MacLehose Press

Tropic of Violence

Nathacha Appanah
Authors:
Nathacha Appanah

Marie, a nurse on the island of Mayotte, adopts an abandoned baby and names him Moïse, raising him as a French boy. As he grows up, Moïse struggles with his status as an "outsider" and to understand why he was abandoned as a baby. When Marie dies, he is left alone, plunged into uncertainty and turmoil, ending up in the largest and most infamous slum on Mayotte, nicknamed "Gaza".Narrated by five different characters, Tropic of Violence is an exploration of lost youth on the French island of Mayotte in the Indian Ocean. Shining a powerful light on problems of violence, immigration, identity, deprivation and isolation on this island that became a French département in 2011, it is a remarkable, unsettling new novel that draws on the author's own observations from her time on Mayotte.

riverrun

Astroturf

Matthew Sperling
Authors:
Matthew Sperling

'I loved Matthew Sperling's sly, subversive novel, a wickedly funny tale of how to come out on top in a fake news world.' Olivia Laing At thirty, Ned is in a rut. His girlfriend has dumped him, his job is boring and he lives in a dismal bedsit. While others around him climb the property ladder and get ahead, he seems destined to remain one of life's plodders. Encouraged by a friend to try using steriods to bulk up his frame, Ned is thrilled to discover a new vitality within himself. Physical changes are only the beginning: his mental state is clearer, he feels more confident and, most thrillingly of all, friends and lovers alike seem compelled by this new improved Ned. Using his knowledge of the murky yet surprising online world of steroids, Ned begins to build a business and discovers that his talents can take him further than he ever thought possible. But when is new life is threatened, he finds himself doing things he never would have dared to do before.And it all seems to be going fine . . . ASTROTURF explores identity, class, belonging and masculinity both online and IRL, with a light touch and a keen sense of humour. Ripley-esque in its depiction of a morally dubious but compelling main character, it is likely to appeal to readers of David Szalay's All That Man Is and those who enjoy Jonathan Franzen's flawed but entertaining male protagonists. It also has a touch of the pathos and ironic British sensibility that made Peep Show such a brilliant and era-defining TV show.

MacLehose Press

The Tree of the Toraja

Philippe Claudel
Authors:
Philippe Claudel

A middle-aged filmmaker visits Indonesia and becomes entranced by the Toraja custom of interning the bodies of very young deceased children in the trunks of trees. In time, the trunk heals, encasing and protecting the tiny bodies as the tree grows slowly heavenwards. On his return to France, the filmmaker receives news that his dearest friend is dying of cancer, prompting a reflection on the part death occupies in our existence, our inability to confront our mortality and our struggle to conceive of a happy life after a devastating loss.For the Toraja, dying is a central part of being alive. Death is at the forefront of their culture, unlike the western preference for keeping death firmly in the shadows, unacknowledged until it begins to really breathe down your neck and simply cannot be ignored; a taboo subject to be feared and resented. Like the trees of the Toraja, this powerful novel encloses and preserves memories of lost loves and friendships, and contains the promise of rebirth and rebuilding, even after a terrible tragedy.

MacLehose Press

Vernon Subutex Two

Virginie Despentes
Authors:
Virginie Despentes

Rock star Alexandre Bleach might be dead, but he has a secret. It's a secret that concerns several people, but the only person who can unlock it is Vernon Subutex, former record shop proprietor turned homeless messiah and guru, last seen hallucinating and feverish on a bench in the parc des Buttes Chaumont.Aïcha wants to know the truth behind the death of her mother, Vodka Satana. And if she finds the bastards responsible, she wants to make them pay, whatever Céleste thinks of her plan.Céleste wants Aïcha to get a grip and stop hanging around with Subutex's gang of disciples. The Hyena wants to find the Bleach tapes. She wants to untangle her complicated feelings about Anaïs, her boss' assistant. And speaking of her boss, she does not want Laurent Dopalet to discover how badly she has double-crossed him.Laurent Dopalet wants the Hyena to find and destroy the Bleach tapes. He wants to forget he ever knew Vodka Satana. He wants people to stop graffitiing his apartment with ludicrous allegations. Above all, he wants people to understand: NONE OF THIS IS HIS FAULT

MacLehose Press

The Lizard Strategy

Valerio Varesi
Authors:
Valerio Varesi

Italy's Maigret returns in another smouldering noir from a master of the police procedural "A master storyteller" Barry Forshaw, IndependentParma is blanketed in snow, but this pristine, white veneer cannot mask the stench of corruption. Its officials are no longer working for its people - only for themselves - crime is out of control and resentment festers in every district. Commissario Soneri remains at heart an idealist, so the state of Parma wounds him more than most. And now he is presented with three mysteries at once, each more impenetrable than the last. In a river creek on the outskirts of the city, tipped off by a local, he finds a mobile phone that rings through the night but holds no data; an elderly patient with senile dementia is reported missing from a hospice; and the mayor of Parma, who was reported as taking a holiday on the ski slopes, has disappeared off the face of the earth - just when he seemed certain to be implicated in a seismic corruption scandal at city hall.

MacLehose Press

The Girl Who Takes an Eye for an Eye: Continuing Stieg Larsson's Millennium Series

David Lagercrantz
Authors:
David Lagercrantz
MacLehose Press

One Clear Ice-cold January Morning at the Beginning of the 21st Century

Roland Schimmelpfennig
Authors:
Roland Schimmelpfennig
MacLehose Press

A Hero Born

Jin Yong
Authors:
Jin Yong
riverrun

Seventeen

Hideo Yokoyama
Authors:
Hideo Yokoyama
MacLehose Press

The Sixteen Trees of the Somme

Lars Mytting
Authors:
Lars Mytting
MacLehose Press

Three Days and a Life

Pierre Lemaitre
Authors:
Pierre Lemaitre

Antoine is twelve years old. His parents are divorced and he lives with his mother in Beauval, a small, backwater town surrounded by forests, where everyone knows everyone's business, and nothing much ever happens. But in the last days of 1999, a series of events unfolds, culminating in the shocking vanishing without trace of a young child. The adults of the town are at a loss to explain the disappearance, but for Antoine, it all begins with the violent death of his neighbour's dog. From that one brutal act, his fate and the fate of his neighbour's six year old son are bound forever.In the years following Rémi's disappearance, Antoine wrestles with the role his actions played. As a seemingly inescapable net begins to tighten, breaking free from the suffocating environs of Beauval becomes a gnawing obsession. But how far does he have to run, and how long will it take before his past catches up with him again?Translated from the French by Frank Wynne

MacLehose Press

Vernon Subutex One

Virginie Despentes
Authors:
Virginie Despentes

SHORTLISTED FOR THE MAN BOOKER INTERNATIONAL 2018WHO IS VERNON SUBUTEX?An urban legend. A fall from grace. The mirror who reflects us all.Vernon Subutex was once the proprietor of Revolver, an infamous music shop in Bastille. His legend spread throughout Paris. But by the 2000s his shop is struggling. With his savings gone, his unemployment benefit cut, and the friend who had been covering his rent suddenly dead, Vernon Subutex finds himself down and out on the Paris streets.He has one final card up his sleeve. Even as he holds out his hand to beg for the first time, a throwaway comment he once made on Facebook is taking the internet by storm. Vernon does not realise this, but the word is out: Vernon Subutex has in his possession the last filmed recordings of Alex Bleach, the famous musician and Vernon's benefactor, who has only just died of a drug overdose. A crowd of people from record producers to online trolls and porn stars are now on Vernon's trail.Translated from the French by Frank Wynne

MacLehose Press

The Awkward Squad

Sophie Hénaff
Authors:
Sophie Hénaff
MacLehose Press

The Girl in the Spider's Web

David Lagercrantz
Authors:
David Lagercrantz