Gaby Koppel, author: Reparation
‘With its themes of ageing and memory and its cast of smart older women, The Hopeful Traveller takes us on a world tour that is nostalgic for earlier times without being sentimental’
Janina David (born 1930 in Poland) is a Holocaust survivor and a British writer and translator. She escaped from the Warsaw Ghetto in 1943, hiding in a Polish Catholic household and a convent until she was able to reach Paris in 1946 and then emigrated to Australia, alone, in 1948.
A year after moving to London in 1958, she started work on a three-volume autobiography, the first volume of which—A Square of Sky—went on to be a best-seller in Germany, a set text in German schools, a play and a film. In 1982 she was awarded Germany’s Goldener Gong together with the film’s director, Franz Peter Wirth, and its lead actor, Dana Vávrová.
Since 1978, she has worked as an author and translator of children’s and young people’s books, and of radio plays, for the BBC and others. Her other titles include A Touch of Earth and Light over the Water.
In France, Mattie feels 20 again. In Poland, Magda revisits her impoverished family. In Uzbekistan, Diana lets a fellow tourist kiss her. In Germany, Lynn loses her luggage on the Düsseldorf train.
The Hopeful Traveller is a collection of short stories about—and told by—single women who have put the past behind them but are still looking for their anchor in the present.
It includes bitter-sweet accounts of the freedoms of postwar life, of foreign travel, of the rekindling of old friendships and of the search for new ones.
The stories speak of cosmopolitan, self-confident, well-heeled characters, in an era just before the birth of feminism, conventional in their expectations of men, always just a step away from displacement and alienation.
Set variously in Paris, Kalisz, Samarkand, Hong Kong, Melbourne, Erfurt, Singapore and London, these stories, from a much-admired veteran writer, offer a teasing mix of realism and fantasy, wish-fulfilment and regret.
Some of these stories have appeared in translation in overseas annuals and collections.
The Hopeful Traveller
EXTENT 232 pages
SIZE 203mm x 127mm (8” x 5”)
BIC CODES FYB
GENRES Fiction, Short stories
PUBLICATION DATE 2 September 2021
PR/PUBLICITY Dr Stephen Games