The longlist of the German Book Award 2020 was just announced and you will find absolute gems on this year’s list. Here is a selection:

Olivia Wenzel, 1000 COILS OF FEAR (S. Fischer) – a dialogue and exploration of motherhood, family, national identity, trauma, loss and Blackness. rights sold to UK, US, Denmark, the Netherlands

Leif Randt, ALLEGRO PASTEL (Kiepenheuer & Witsch) – the story of a seemingly normal love and its transformations, a novel in three phases that begins in the recordbreakingly hot spring of 2018. rights sold to Croatia, Macedonia, Netherlands, Norway, Serbia

Birgit Birnbacher, ME, BY MY SIDE (Zsolnay & Deuticke) – the winner of the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize 2019 follows an ex-fellon’s attempt at a new life. rights sold to Croatia

Dorothee Elmiger, OUT OF THE SUGAR FACTORY (Hanser) – the recipient of the Swiss Literature Prize 2015 and the shortlist nominee for the Swiss Book Award 2014 on the trail of capital, labour and lust. rights sold to Sweden (under negotiation)

Roman Ehrlich, MALÉ (S. Fischer) – the winner of the Alfred Döblin Medal and the Robert Walser Award on drop-outs, adventurers and utopians who group up on the sinking Maledives islands to live out their dreams

Thomas Hettche, HEARTSTRING (Kiepenheuer & Witsch) – a fascinating social and family novel on the power of fantasy in dark times and the relevance of art in situations of crisis

Anne Weber, EPIC ANNETTE (Matthes & Seitz Berlin) – a novel on the incredible life of a true heroe of the 20th century, Annette de Beaumanoir. rights sold to France

Robert Seethaler, THE LAST MOVEMENT (Hanser Berlin) – the moving portrait of the outstanding composer Gustav Mahler at the end of his life. rights sold to US/UK, Italy, Netherlands, France, Spain, Croatia, Denmark (under negotiation), Sweden (under negotiation)

Frank Witzel, SWEET SHIPWRECK (Matthes & Seitz) – a moving farewell to the Federal Republic by the winner of the German Book Prize