The weekend by Bernhard Schlink

Bernhard Schlink  is a German writer , professor of law and former Judge ,he writes both lit fiction and crime fiction ,he is best Known for the runaway sucess the reader ,like that book this one tackles a trouble time in Germanys history .

The Weekend is a meeting of freinds after nearly twenty years drawn together by the release of Jorg  a terrorist and member of the red army Faction ,the terrorist organsation in germany that had marxist ideal and carried a number of attacks and killings during the seventies in what was called the german autumn .Jorg was one of these terrorist he was sent away for life for a terroist attack were people died ,but has cancer and was thus granted a presidental pardon to live his last days in freedom .The group draws to a rundown house in Brandburg .the former friends assemble ,now there a priest ,dentist and journalist they have left behind the past and got on with there lives and Jorg in some ways is like a faithful dog still faithful to his old master the RAF .as the weekend unfolds there are recrimnations about past acts ,what happen ,there is also a huge suprise along the way for Jorg as he enconters ….

AT first glance he was still a handsome man, tall , square face , bright green eyes , thick salt and pepper hair but his poor posture emphasized his little paunch ,which didn’t match his thin arms and legs ,his gait was slow ,his face gray ,and wrinkles that crisscrossed his forehead and were steep and long in his cheeks indicated not concentration so much as a vague sense of strain

Jorg as he appears on his release .

Tense is high in this book ,a sense of unease surrounds this group .Like many groups of friends over time views and postions have changed ,the group as a whole have gotten on with there life and Jorg appears some what alien at times to them ,like looking in a mirror of what night have been ,I for one was a little radical in my youth but with a small r .But in hindsight some of my ideas were overly idealistic ,and this is refelct in the group henner now a journalist ,writng everything that happens and has happened .Ilse a teacher ,andrew a lawyer and Ulrich a sucessful dentist with all the trapping that brings like a nice car etc .Then there is Jorg a man that has been in isolation for twenty years ,facing the new world of global commerce and increased consumerism .Schlink has hit the mark again and tackled a tough subject with a subtile and gentle hand ,not overly polticial but enough to make it seem realstic .

October 2010


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