The Dark Room tells the stories of three ordinary Germans: Helmut, a young photographer in Berlin in the 1930s who uses his craft to express his patriotic fervour; Lore, a 12-year-old girl who in 1945 guides her young siblings across a devastated Germany after her Nazi parents are seized by the Allies; and, 50 years later, Micha, a young teacher obsessed with what his loving grandfather did in the war, struggling to deal with the past of his family and his country.
Rachel Seiffert’s first novel, The Dark Room, won a Betty Trask Award and the Los Angeles Times’ Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction. It was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and adapted into a feature film called Lore. Seiffert has also received a David T. K. Wong award from PEN International for her work.
©2001 Rachel Seiffert (P)2013 Audible Ltd
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"Absorbing and strangely enjoyable"
Oh dear.. The human condition in adversity makes for a grim story, but nevertheless an interesting and absorbing one. Very well written and narrated, this audiobook consists of three stories that I had assumed would come together at the end..but they do not. This doesn't detract from the stories in any way other than you would like to know what the future held for Helmut and Lore. I found myself thinking about this book during the day, definitely a sign of something a little special.
"Very well written and thought-provoking"
I found this audiobook absorbing, the characters multi-dimensional, and the narratives compelling as well as thought-provoking; it took me less than 24 hours to finish it because I didn't want to stop listening.
John Telfer's narration is wonderful, full of nuance. My next step will be to search out his other works.
I strongly recommend this book to anyone with an interest in WWII (especially if photography is also an interest as it plays a part throughout as well), but with the caveat that this is less like a novel than three short stories on a theme. Please don't let that deter you, though, as each story is strong on its own as well as in light of the others. The Dark Room is definitely worth a listen.
"Innocence was survival"
A tale of innocence in a dark period of history told from the perspective of children towards the defeat of Nazi Germany, one that is different to many we are familiar with. It is a tale of pain, of separation and loss, and of fear. It tells of love and innocence and the strong need for survival and the protection of those we love. It is a grim tale, without much hope or compassion, but one which needs to be told again and again. It is beautifully read, with great empathy and skill and powerfully written.
The Reader. A complex story of infatuation, love and survival~ again a tale to be told revealing the many different perspectives found in conflict war, hate and survival, and in my view, the book was better than the film.
This was a book I admired, it engaged me totally, rather than being enjoyable. It made me think and reconsider and I appreciated the skill of the writer and of the narrator.
Neither laugh nor cry, for it was a story for reflection, and for thought with some very poignant moments which create lasting images.
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