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Hendrik Groen stated his diary on the literary website of Torpedo magazine. He says about his novel: 'There's not one sentence that's a lie, but not every word is true.' The Secret Diary of Hendrik Groen, 83 1/4 Years Old has been translated into over twenty languages.
Poignant, moving and funny, I chuckled my way through this delightful (but no longer secret) diary from the rather lovable Hendrik Groen. Hendrik has reached the age where his address book is depressingly empty and his life has become an endless string of funerals and conversations concerning bowel movements, the latest list of ailments and euthanasia. The care home he lives in is like a waiting room for death and so in an effort to keep his own sanity he decides to write his memoir. He intends to record it all, the mystery of the fish murderer, the suspicious activities being carried out by those who run the establishment and last but by no means least the happenings of THE-OLD-BUT-NOT-DEAD club. Hendrik is an endearing character who I very much enjoyed spending time with in this gentle read that left me feeling a little sad but hopeful. Snippets of the life he lived and what remains of it filter in throughout the book and have a greater sense of poignancy as they merge in with the everyday happenings of the here and now. When we are old we are still very much the person we have always been, hopefully reading this will remind us all that behind each and every elderly person lies a story. ~ Shelley Fallows Sarah Broadhurst's view... An old people's home in the Netherlands is the setting for this satire but it could be anywhere except for the small amount of political references. But Margaret Thatcher and Nelson Mandela's deaths are commented upon too. With a vast cast of residents and all kinds of worries and problems we concentrate mainly on a group of friends who form the 'old-but-not-dead club' where each member organises an outing. They do more than most old people ever think of: take a cookery lesson, wine-tasting, painting, synchronized swimming, tai chi, bowls, golf and such. Hanging over the home is the threat of renovation, therefore change. Our narrator is determined to get sight of the regulations and decides to challenge the board. Solicitors become involved. His three closest friends have a dramatic and sad year which is sensitively portrayed. The action takes place over that year and is written in diary form. Personally I feel that if you are involved with the elderly you might find this all a bit disturbing despite it's amusing style. ~ Sarah Broadhurst
Eighty-five-year-old Hendrik Groen is fed up to his false teeth with coffee mornings and bingo. __________ Along with fellow members of the Old-But-Not-Dead Club, he embarks on a wild spree of octogenarian anarchy. But the home's director will not stand for any more drunken bar crawls, illicit fireworks or geriatric romance. The good name of the care home will not be disgraced. But when Hendrik learns of a plan to close the home down he realises life outside it could be much worse. He and the gang must stop the closure before it's too late. Or drop dead trying . . . __________ 'A joy to read. An entertaining and uplifting story of a man in the winter of his days' John Boyne, Irish Times 'Highly entertaining, utterly convincing. A delightful and touching saga of one man's way of coping with old age'Daily Express 'Terrific. This geriatric Adrian Mole made me laugh' Fanny Blake, Woman and Home 'A funny but also touching diary praised for its wit and realism' BBC Radio 4 Front Row
Penguin presents the audiobook edition of On the Bright Side by Hendrik Groen, read by Patrick Ryecart. Everyones favourite octogenarian is back and - together with the Old-But-Not-Dead Club - is more determined than ever to wreak havoc. After a year mourning the death of his beloved friend Eefje, Hendrik picks up his pen once again to chronicle the goings on both inside his care home and in the increasingly confusing world outside. He may be older and a little more wobbly but his appetite for mischief hasnt diminished. When fears arise that the home is set for demolition its up to Hendrik and the Old-But-Not-Dead Club to intervene. Both heart-breaking and hilarious, we see Hendrik make new friends whilst losing old ones and embarking on new adventures while confronting the realities of old age. Written with his characteristic charm and candour Hendrik is determined to enjoy his autumnal years and turn a twinkly eye on the brighter side of life.
In the vein of bestsellers like A Man Called Ove or The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry comes a funny, tender-hearted tale about friendship, love, and an old man who is young at heart.
Nach dem groen Erfolg von "e;Eierlikortage"e; folgt mit "e;Tanztee"e; nun der zweite Streich des liebenswurdigsten und humorvollsten Rentners der westlichen Hemisphare: Der Alt-aber-nicht-tot-Club von Hendrik Groen und seinen Freunden ist zwar noch ein bisschen alter geworden, aber auch im neuen Jahr sind sie voller Energie - und gewillt, sich die Zeit im Altersheim Amsterdam-Nord so angenehm wie moglich zu machen. Hendrik nimmt den Rentneralltag zwischen Arztbesuchen und Bingoabenden aufs Korn, beschwort die Kraft der Liebe und Freundschaft und findet immer wieder die passenden Worte fur unsere verruckte und manchmal schreckliche Welt, der ein bisschen mehr Altersweisheit, Humor und Selbstironie verdammt gut tun wurde.
Hendrik Groen mag alt sein (83 1/4 um genau zu sein), aber er ist noch lange nicht tot. Zugegeben, seine taglichen Spaziergange werden kurzer, weil die Beine nicht mehr recht wollen, und er muss regelmaig zum Arzt. Aber deshalb nur noch Kaffeetrinken, die Geranien anstarren und auf das Ende warten? Kommt nicht in Frage. Ganz im Gegenteil. 83 Jahre lang hat Hendrik immer nur Ja und Amen gesagt. Doch in diesem Jahr wird er ein Tagebuch fuhren und darin endlich alles rauslassen - ein unzensierter Blick auf das Leben in einem Altenheim in Amsterdam-Nord. Das ist richtig lustig und zugleich so herzzerreiend, dass wir Hendrik am Ende dieses Jahres nicht mehr aus unserem Leben lassen wollen.