W.G. Sebald

Vertigo

Fiction by

Translated from the German by Michael Hulse

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The Rings of Saturn

by

Translated from the German by Michael Hulse

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The Emigrants

by

Translated from the German by Michael Hulse

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Sebald Set

by

Translated from the German by Michael Hulse

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Unrecounted

Poetry by Jan Peter Tripp

Translated by Michael Hamburger

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Urn Burial

Nonfiction by Thomas Browne

With a contribution by

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[O]ne of the most deeply serious and ambitious contemporary authors, whose fraught intelligence had reckoned, and self-reckoned, with the gravest questions of European history, and who had fearlessly founded a new literary form—combining essay, fiction, and photography—in order to probe those questions in new ways.

—James Wood

The Emigrants is one of the best novels to appear since World War II.

Review of Contemporary Fiction

W. G. Sebald’s [early death is] much lamented by admirers of his too few books, chiefly The Emigrants, The Rings of Saturn, Vertigo, and Austerlitz. Readers of these four essay-fictions know that Sebald exemplified the best kind of cosmopolitan literary intelligence - humane, digressive, deeply erudite, unassuming and tinged with melancholy. The last quality is particularly important, for if one had to characterize Sebald’s ethos - the mood he generates on the page, the themes that haunt him - one could hardly do better than borrow the title of the famous essay by Freud: ‘Mourning and Melancholy.’

The Washington Post

Tragic, stunningly beautiful, strange and haunting. The secret of Sebald’s appeal is that he saw himself in what now seems almost an old-fashioned way as a voice of conscience, someone who remembers injustice, who speaks for those who can no longer speak.

The New York Review of Books

In Sebald’s writing, everything is connected, everything webbed together by the unseen threads of history, or chance, or fate, or death… beautiful and unsettling, elevated into an art of the uncanny - an art that was, in the end, Sebald’s strange and inscrutable gift.

Slate

A writer of almost unclassifiable originality, but whose voice we recognize as indispensable and central to our time.

The New York Times Book Review

One of the most mysteriously sublime of contemporary writers.

—James Wood

A writer whose work belongs on the high shelf alongside that of Kafka, Borges, and Proust.

The New York Times Book Review

The first thing to be said about W. G. Sebald’s books is that they always had a posthumous quality to them. He wrote - as was often remarked - like a ghost. He was one of the most innovative writers of the late twentieth century, and yet part of this originality derived from the way his prose felt exhumed from the nineteenth.

—Geoff Dyer

Few writers have traveled as quickly from obscurity to the sort of renown that yields an adjective as quickly as German writer W. G. Sebald (1944 - 2001), and now Sebaldian is as evocative as Kafkaesque. Sebald is that rare being: an inimitable stylist who creates extraordinary sentences that, like crystals, simultaneously refract and magnify meaning.

Booklist

Sebald stands with Primo Levi as the prime speaker of the Holocaust and, with him, the prime contradiction of Adorno’s dictum that after it, there can be no art.

—Richard Eder, The New York Times Book Review

Tragic, stunningly beautiful, strange and haunting. The secret of Sebald’s appeal is that he saw himself in what now seems almost an old-fashioned way as a voice of conscience, someone who remembers injustice, who speaks for those who can no longer speak.

The New York Review of Books

The books are fascinating for the way they inhabit their own self-determined genre, but that’s not ultimately why they are essential reading. There is a moral magnitude and a weary, melancholy wisdom in Sebald’s writing that transcends the literary and attains something like an oracular register. Reading him feels like being spoken to in a dream. He does away with the normal proceedings of narrative fiction - plot, characterization, events leading to other events - so that what we get is the unmediated expression of a pure and seemingly disembodied voice. That voice is an extraordinary presence in contemporary literature, and it may be another decade before the magnitude - and the precise nature - of utterances are fully realized.

The New Yorker

Sebald has done what every writer dreams of doing.

—Roberta Silman, The New York Times Book Review

In Sebald’s writing, everything is connected, everything webbed together by the unseen threads of history, or chance, or fate, or death… beautiful and unsettling, elevated into an art of the uncanny - an art that was, in the end, Sebald’s strange and inscrutable gift.

Slate

Few writers have traveled as quickly from obscurity to the sort of renown that yields an adjective as quickly as German writer W. G. Sebald (1944 - 2001), and now Sebaldian is as evocative as Kafkaesque. Sebald is that rare being: an inimitable stylist who creates extraordinary sentences that, like crystals, simultaneously refract and magnify meaning.

Booklist

Sebald stands with Primo Levi as the prime speaker of the Holocaust and, with him, the prime contradiction of Adorno’s dictum that after it, there can be no art.

—Richard Eder, The New York Times Book Review

For all its dark contents and burden of undeclared grief, Vertigo is dizzyingly light and transparent.

—Benjamin Kunkel, The Village Voice

Out of exquisitely attuned feeling for the past, Sebald fashioned an entirely new form of literature. I’ve read his books countless times trying to understand how he did it. In the end, I can only say that he practiced a kind of magic born out of almost supernatural sensitivity.

—Nicole Krauss

A writer of almost unclassifiable originality, but whose voice we recognize as indispensable and central to our time.

The New York Times Book Review

The first thing to be said about W. G. Sebald’s books is that they always had a posthumous quality to them. He wrote - as was often remarked - like a ghost. He was one of the most innovative writers of the late twentieth century, and yet part of this originality derived from the way his prose felt exhumed from the nineteenth.

—Geoff Dyer

Few writers have traveled as quickly from obscurity to the sort of renown that yields an adjective as quickly as German writer W. G. Sebald (1944 - 2001), and now Sebaldian is as evocative as Kafkaesque. Sebald is that rare being: an inimitable stylist who creates extraordinary sentences that, like crystals, simultaneously refract and magnify meaning.

Booklist

Sublime.

—Cynthia Ozick, The New Republic

Measured, solemn, sardonic, hypnotic.

—Joshua Cohen, The New York Times Book Review

In Sebald’s writing, everything is connected, everything webbed together by the unseen threads of history, or chance, or fate, or death… beautiful and unsettling, elevated into an art of the uncanny - an art that was, in the end, Sebald’s strange and inscrutable gift.

Slate

Most writers, even good ones, write of what can be written. The very greatest write of what cannot be written. I think of Akhmatova and Primo Levi, for example, and of W. G. Sebald.

The New York Times

Sebald stands with Primo Levi as the prime speaker of the Holocaust and, with him, the prime contradiction of Adorno’s dictum that after it, there can be no art.

—Richard Eder, The New York Times Book Review

Sebald has done what every writer dreams of doing. The Rings of Saturn glows with the radiance and resilience of the human spirit.

—Roberta Silman, The New York Times Book Review

Is literary greatness still possible? What would a noble literary enterprise look like now? One of the few answers available to English-language readers is the work of W.G. Sebald.

—Susan Sontag, The Times Literary Supplement

Few writers make one more aware of the seductive powers of language.

—Tim Parks, The New York Review of Books

An intensely personal work, showing us Sebald’s genesis as a writer, and it is constantly stimulating.

—Sebastian Shakespeare, TLS

One emerges from it shaken, seduced, and deeply impressed.

—Anita Brookner, Spectator

Sebald is a thrilling, original writer. He makes narration a state of investigative bliss. His narrative doesn’t just tell stories; it offers itself as a model of consciousness, demonstrating that to be fully aware of oneself in time is to suffer incurable vertigo. In his droll way, Sebald possesses the world-covering ambition of a magus: he wants a book to be like his old childhood atlas, made to hold… all conceivable mysteries.

—W.S. Di Piero, The New York Times Book Review

A haunting masterpiece from W.G. Sebald.

—The Washington Post

Think of W.G. Sebald as memory’s Einstein.

—Richard Eder, Los Angeles Times

An extraordinary palimpsest of nature, human, and literary history.

—Merle Rubin, The Wall Street Journal

Ostensibly a record of a journey on foot through coastal East Anglia, The Rings of Saturn is also a brilliantly allusive study of England’s imperial past and the nature of decline and fall, of loss and decay. The Rings of Saturn is exhilaratingly, you might say hypnotically, readable. It is hard to imagine a stranger or more compelling work.

—Robert McCrum, The London Observer

Stunning and strange. Like a dream you want to last forever.

—Roberta Silman, The New York Times

This is very beautiful, and its strangeness is what is beautiful… One of the most mysteriously sublime of contemporary writers. And here, in The Rings of Saturn, is a book more uncanny than The Emigrants.

—James Wood, The New Republic

The Emigrants is that terrifyingly rare and wonderful thing: a unique masterpiece…

—Thomas McGonigle, Chicago Tribune

W.G. Sebald has written an astonishing masterpiece: it seems perfect while being unlike any book one has ever read. Bewitching in its subtlety, sublime in its directness and in the grandeur of its subject. The Emigrants is an irresistable book.

—Susan Sontag

Sebald is a rare and elusive species, but still, he is an easy read, just as Kafka is. He is an addiction, and once buttonholed by his books, you have neither the wish nor the will to tear yourself away.

—Anthony Lane, The New Yorker

Most writers, even good ones, write of what can be written. The very greates write of what cannot be written. I think of Akhmatova and Primo Levi, for example, and of W.G. Sebald.

—The New York Times

A masterpiece.

—Richard Eder, The New York Times

Stunning and strange. Like a dream you want to last forever.

—Roberta Silman , *The New York Times Book Review *

Sebald’s Unrecounted, the result of a long collaboration with a childhood friend, German artist Jan Peter Tripp, is suitably haunting.

The Guardian

The magic of W.G. Sebald’s incandescent body of work continues to unfold, with this unexpected collaboration.

—Susan Sontag

An extraordinarily handsome edition of poems by the late great writer.

Confrontation

Sebald’s elliptical ‘micropoems’ evoke the metaphysical bewilderment Sebald knew so well…. Unrecounted is actually deeply consonant with his deepest impulses as a writer.

The New Republic

Think of W. G. Sebald as memory’s Einstein.

—Richard Eder , Los Angeles Times

Sebald is a rare and elusive species…But still he is an easy read, just as Kafka is…He is an addiction, and, once button-holed by his books, you have neither the wish nor the will to tear yourself away.

—Anthony Lane, New Yorker

Sebald is a thrilling, original writer. He makes narration a state of investigative bliss.

—W.S. Di Piero, New York Times Book Review

Tragic, stunningly beautiful, strange and haunting.

—*The New York Review of Books *

A masterpiece.

The New York Times
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