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Greg Baxter was born in Texas in 1974. He lived for a number of years in Dublin, and now lives in Berlin. He is the author of A Preparation for Death and The Apartment, both richly acclaimed.
Munich Airport: the brilliant, haunting new novel by Greg Baxter An American expat in London, about to enter a meeting, takes a phone call. The caller is a German policewoman. The news she has to convey is almost incomprehensible: the man's sister, Miriam, has been found dead in her Berlin flat, of starvation. Three weeks later, the man, his elderly father, and an American consular official find themselves in an almost unbearably strange place: a fogbound Munich Airport, where Miriam's coffin is to be loaded onto a commercial jet. Greg Baxter's extraordinary novel tells the story of these three people over those three weeks of waiting for Miriam's body to be released, sifting through her possessions, and trying to work out what could have led her to her awful death. Munich Airport is a novel about the meaning of home, and about the families we improvise when our real families fall apart. It is a gripping, daring and mesmeric read from one of the most gifted young novelists currently at work. Greg Baxter was born in Texas in 1974. He lived for a number of years in Dublin, and now lives in Berlin. He is the author of two previous highly acclaimed books: A Preparation for Death, a memoir, and The Apartment, a novel. 'This rich and profound book is full of philosophical ideas and stark, ascetic beauty ... The writing is scrupulous and often superb ... I wholeheartedly recommend Munich Airport to everyone interested in the ongoing and fascinating human conversation that is first-rate fiction.' Guardian 'Quiet but mesmeric ... The three central characters are beautifully drawn, their personalities unveiled for us during a series of understated revelations...It is a novel that, without a trace of sentimentality, is about the importance of family, and conversely how the existential loneliness of each of the characters has impoverished their lives' Independent 'A story ... about the age in which we live, the nature of consumption, and the terrors that beset us and alienate us from ourselves and each other. ... So much more bracing and consequential than the bulk of contemporary fiction' Irish Times 'Assured and fluent ... a forensic examination of what it means today to be a man, and to be human' TLS 'Honest, bracing and eloquent ... Munich Airport is a brilliant achievement' Wall Street Journal 'A writer of courage and lucidity. His fluent and assured prose owes some debt to the Austro-Hungarian Franz Kafka and the Austrian Thomas Bernhard. ... Baxter is high literature' New York Times
From the critically acclaimed author of The Apartment comes a powerful, poetic, and haunting exploration of loss, love, and isolation. An American living in London receives a phone call from a German policewoman telling him the nearly inconceivable news that his sister, Miriam, has been found dead in her Berlin apartment-from starvation. Three weeks later the man, his father, and an American consular official named Trish find themselves in the bizarre surroundings of a fogbound Munich Airport, where Miriam's coffin is set to be loaded onto a commercial jet and returned to America. Greg Baxter's bold, mesmeric novel tells the story of these three people over the course of three weeks, as they wait for Miriam's body to be released, grieve over her incomprehensible death, and try to possess a share of her suffering--and her yearning and grace. With prose that is tense, precise, and at times highly lyrical, MUNICH AIRPORT is a novel for our time, a work of richness, gravity, and even dark humor. Following his acclaimed American debut, MUNICH AIRPORT marks the establishment of Greg Baxter as an important new voice in literature, one who has already drawn comparisons to masters such as Kafka, Camus, and Murakami.
A powerful and elegant debut novel about love, memory, exile, and war.One snowy December morning in an old European city, an American man leaves his shabby hotel to meet a local woman who has agreed to help him search for an apartment to rent. THE APARTMENT follows the couple across a blurry, illogical, and frozen city into a past the man is hoping to forget, and leaves them at the doorstep of an uncertain future-their cityscape punctuated by the man's lingering memories of time spent in Iraq and the life he abandoned in the United States. Contained within the details of this day is a complex meditation on America's relationship with the rest of the world, an unflinching glimpse at the permanence of guilt and despair, and an exploration into our desire to cure violence with violence.A novel about how our relationships to others-and most importantly to ourselves-alters how we see the world, THE APARTMENT perfectly captures the peculiarity and excitement of being a stranger in a strange city. Written in an affecting and intimate tone that gradually expands in scope, intensity, poetry, and drama, Greg Baxter's clear-eyed first novel tells the intriguing story of these two people on this single day. Both beguiling and raw in its observations and language, THE APARTMENT is a crisp novel with enormous range that offers profound and unexpected wisdom.
The Apartment, the astonishing first novel by Greg Baxter, is a tale of war and peace, friendship and aloneness. A man walks across an old European capital. Heavy snow falls. He has come here from far away, hoping to forget. Instead, he remembers: home, war, lost friends. Complicity. In the company of a new friend and alive to the new experiences of the city, he moves through the snow and his complicated history in search of an apartment. The Apartment, by the author of the acclaimed memoir A Preparation for Death, is a novel about war, the relationship between America and the rest of the world, and the brittle foundations of Western culture; but above all it is a book about the mysteries and alchemies of friendship - truthful, moving and brilliant. Acclaimed by Hisham Matar, Adam Thorpe and Roddy Doyle, among others, The Apartment is a deeply original and profoundly involving novel. 'Admirable for its scope, ambition and unashamed seriousness of purpose, as well as its willingness to take stylistic and structural risks' Julie Myerson, Observer 'Stunningly good' Susan Jeffreys, Saturday Review, BBC Radio Four 'Baxter's superbly elegant, understated writing explores the dynamics of America's relationship with the rest of the world' The Times 'Lucidly written and astutely observed ... The novel exerts a hypnotic force ... Baxter continually undercuts our expectations for his novel. And it is precisely this sort of subversion, along with the author's shimmering prose, that makes The Apartment such a surprisingly compelling read' New York Times 'Absorbing, atmospheric and enigmatic ... Its long, frigid journey into a long, sleepless night explores a man's uneasy relationship with his past, himself and a world in which violence is inescapable' Los Angeles Times 'Powerful ... Baxter's clean and direct prose generates its own momentum' Daily Beast 'A wonderful, horrible, wise novel' Dazed & Confused (Book of the Month) 'A dark and sinewy novel, written with sparse clarity and affecting subtlety' Stuart Evers, Observer (Books of the Year) Greg Baxter was born in Texas in 1974. He lived for a number of years in Dublin, and now lives in Berlin. He is the author of the acclaimed memoir A Preparation for Death. The Apartment is his first novel.
'Traditional autobiography is composed after the experience has passed. I wrote this book in the very panic of the experiences that inspired it ... ' In his early thirties, Greg Baxter found himself in a strange place. He hated his job, he was drinking excessively, he was sabotaging his most important relationships, and he was no longer doing the thing he cared about most: writing. Strangest of all, at this time he started teaching evening classes in creative writing - and his life changed utterly. A Preparation for Death is a document of the chaos and discovery of that time and of the experiences that led Greg Baxter to that strange place - an extraordinarily intimate account of literary failure (and its consequences), personal decay, and redemption through reading, writing, and truth-telling. Studded with vivid, loving portraits of the people closest to him - his Austrian grandmother, who narrowly survived the Second World War; his mother and father, both described with heartbreakingly close attention; and his cousin Walter, whose own demons provide a striking counterpoint to the author's - it is above all a stunningly vivid and searching self-portrait: possibly the most honest book you'll ever read.