An impressive novel about dignity in old age and the gentle resonance between human beings. Daniel left his hometown years ago but has now returned to visit his former neighbours: Heinz, suffering from cancer, can only communicate with the help of a voice synthesiser; Alfred has dementia. Everyday life is a burden, sustained only by Klara, a sprightly woman who is nonetheless overwhelmed. Daniel takes it upon himself to improve their lives, but in doing so he finds himself in a sensitive situation in which people have got used to simply coping – with each other, with their daily challenges – entirely without outside help. The conflict comes to a head when Daniel is forced to realise that much of what he considered idyllic as a child is in fact anything but.
Writing with trenchant prose and compelling imagery, David Fuchs explores a pressing contemporary issue: how can we offer responsible help without robbing elderly people of their autonomy?
David Fuchs is an author as well as a doctor. He works in Linz as an oncologist and palliative carer, where he was born in 1981. As an author he graduated from the Leonding Academy of Literature, and writes whenever he has time (and when his two children permit).
He drew on his professional experiences for his novel Before We Disappear, without ever being clinical or exploitative. An extract from the novel won the FM4-Wortlaut 2016, 2018 he came 2nd for the blogger prize “Das Debüt 2018” and was nominated for the Austrian Book Prize “Debüt”. In 2018, he also received the Feldkircher Poetry Prize an die Alois Vogel Literature Prize.
@ Haymon Verlag, Innsbruck 2020
Books from Austria
The Austrian Publishers and Booksellers Association represents the interests of Austria´s book industry in economic and political matters. The most important project of the Association is the annual Vienna International Book Fair (BUCH WIEN), in which the Austrian Book Price is awarded.