“Lionheart”: Monica Helfer tells the story of her brother | NDR.de – Culture

Status: 01/31/2022 1:48 PM

After the successes of Dai Bajaj and Fati, Monica Helfer wrote another novel about her family. In her new book “Löwenherz,” the author tells the story of her brother Richard.

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by Alexander Solloch

Canned Heat’s “On The Road Again” is the song Richard listens to every time he drives. He may get his required driver’s license at some point or he may not get it at all, let’s see. He is not a rebel, but he does not expect any real-life guidance from authorities or other authorities. He doesn’t expect anything anyway. He wanders along and then something will happen.

A dog ran after him, he had the most diverse ancestry to show, a shaggy dog, just above the knee, sympathy was instant between them. In front of the house on the second floor in which he lived, Richard bowed to the dog and said and spoke to the animal in a tone of voice first as a teacher to a student, then as a priest to an altar boy, and finally as a comedian to a companion on stage: “Stay with me, do not go away! I call you, What is your name, what is your name, I call you: Shamash. You are the god of the sun. Be a guest in my hut, and if it succeeds, there is no need to worry. ” The future will happen. Either way. For humans as well as for animals. At least you can put a stick on its way.

Monica Helfer’s brother: Richard, Albon Vivant

One might think of a wise young man, Richard, the narrator’s brother six years younger than him, a master of the arts of life, who opens his arms wide to an adventure every day. Whoever climbs into the bathtub on the shore of Lake Constance – perhaps as a place to water the horses – pushes him into the water and sails across the lake in it, and perhaps even the Rhine Falls near Schaffhausen, it will be exciting.

My husband, I mean my second husband, Michael, to whom I am still married, and who knew Richard well. The two became friends shortly after we met and fell in love, I think Michael knew him more than I did. After Richard’s death, he told me, “I don’t know anyone less interested in life than Richard.” I angrily asked him why he’s saying that now because I don’t want to hear something like that. Answer: “It was more interesting to fall over the Rhine Falls in a bathtub than to survive.”

A woman who brings happiness and misfortune to Richard’s life

Richard’s Death: This is not a spring-scented story about someone who knows how to ease the hardships of life more than any of us, or if so, then at most on the surface of Lake Constance. He survives his bathtub adventure unscathed. But the woman who saves him from the water will be his misfortune, though she also, as bad luck bringers so often do, throws much happiness into his life. She pushes her child towards him and disappears. Richard, who was beloved by his father, was called “lionhearted” by him, but he could not get any more attention because “dad”, as we can read in the previous novel, disappeared from the world completely in grief – Richard is suddenly himself the father.

He was a savage, a savage without human law. He loves the child, the child loves him, and the mother does not love him or take care of him, so he has the child. Nature’s law. out of place. So it was believed – a man with a criminal record for possession of marijuana. Who did not even know the real name of the child. Child maid who didn’t even know what his name was. Although he was the best father.

The unreality of the beautiful and sad life

This is at least a moment’s truth, ripped from the realism of Richard’s beautiful and sad life. Maybe everything was completely different? Monica Helfer grapples with all the loopholes, all the questions, and wrestles with her memory, with the memory of her writer husband Michael Colmayer.

I promised him: “When I’m done, I’ll take care of us more.”
He says, “No problem.”
“Then I will continue now.”

Yeah. Monica Helfer, this language artist full of narrative miracles, must go on. Keep going – and please never end, always stay ‘on the road’, on the storytelling path…

additional information

A woman and two men look at a selection of books on shelves full of books and on piles - Photo at the Frankfurt Book Fair © imago / Rupert Oberhäuser Photo: Rupert Oberhäuser

Lots of exciting books coming out this year. For example, it was composed by Uwe Telkamp, ​​Yasmina Reza, Orhan Pamuk and Fatma Aydemir. more

Monica Helfer, The Bagage © Hanser Literaturverlage

In “Die Bagage,” writer Monica Helfer deals with the highly personal story of her mother, who had a difficult childhood due to unclear paternity. more

Assistant Monica:

2 minutes

After the success of “Die Bagage”, Monika Helfer continues to focus on her family in “Vati”. 2 minutes

Lion’s heart

by Monica Helber

page number:
190 pages
a novel
Hans Verlag
Release date:
January 26 2022
Order number:
20.00 EUR

This topic is in the program:

Culture NDR | New books | 02.02.2022 | 12:40 pm

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