By Robert Walser

A Schoolboy's Diary brings jointly greater than seventy of Robert Walser's unusual and beautiful tales, such a lot by no means prior to on hand in English. starting with a series from Walser's first e-book, "Fritz Kocher's Essays," the entire lecture room assignments of a fictional boy who has met a tragically early loss of life, this option levels from sketches of uncomprehending editors, overly passionate readers, and dreamy artists to stories of devilish adultery, sexual encounters on a teach, and Walser's provider in international battle I. all through, Walser's careening, confounding, scrumptious voice holds the reader transfixed.

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Sample text

Gregor glances round: a couple of oafish gardeners sit on the wooden benches inside the concrete tunnel of the shelter, and a louche City type in a suit leans against the wall, irritably fiddling with an unlit cigarette and glaring at the NO SMOKING signs. ” he snarls in Gregor’s direction. Gregor composes his face in a thin smile. “I couldn’t possibly comment,” he says, his Hungarian accent betraying his status as a refugee. ) The louche businessman will be his contact, Goldsmith. He glances at the shelter’s counter.

Hers says TRAINEE NURSE. ” She looks over his shoulder as someone jostles him sideways. His card reads LABORER (UNSKILLED); but she doesn’t have time to read the rest. CAPTAIN’S LOG Yuri Gagarin kicks his shoes off, loosens his tie, and leans back in his chair. ” he complains. ” His companion, still standing, pours a glass of iced tea and passes it to the young colonel-general before drawing one for himself. ” The former first cosmonaut smiles tiredly. “Back before the invasion. ” Misha Gorodin is the only man on the ship who doesn’t have to give a shit whether the captain offers him a seat, but he’s grateful all the same: a little respect goes a long way, and Gagarin’s sunny disposition and friendly attitude are a far cry from some of the fuckheads Misha’s been stuck with in the past.

Kosygin leans forward intently. “Somewhere out there are beings so advanced that they skinned the Earth like a grape and plated it onto this disk—or worse, copied us all right down to the atomic level and duplicated us like one of those American Xerox machines. It’s not just us, though. You are aware of the other continents in the oceans. We think some of them may be inhabited, too—nothing else makes sense. Your task is to take the Sergei Korolev, the first ship of its class, on an historic five-year cruise.

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