Author

Louis Ferron

Louis Ferron (1942-2005) was the son of a German Wehrmacht soldier and a Dutch mother. He made his debut in 1962 with the poem cycle Kleine krijgskunde (Small Theory of War), which was published in a literary magazine. His first novel appeared in 1974. He also wrote essays and translated novels by Baldwin and Nabokov, among others. In 1978 he received the Multatuli Prize for De keisnijder van Fichtenwald (The Stone-Cutter of Fichtenwald). In 1990 he was awarded the AKO Literature Prize for Karelische nachten (Karelian Nights) and in 1994 De Walsenkoning (The Waltz King) won the F. Bordewijk Prize. In 2001 he was awarded the Constantijn Huygens Prize for his oeuvre. Ferron’s last novel was Niemandsbruid (Nobody’s Bride, 2005), the fictionalised story of the life of Adele Schopenhauer, the famous philosopher’s sister.

The Adulterous Grass

The Adulterous Grass

(De Bezige Bij, 2002, 255 pages)

In The Adulterous Grass Louis Ferron traces the tarnished history of the Van Lookerens, a family of ‘textile barons’ in the Achterhoek, a splendid, ancient, country area on the border between the Netherlands and Germany. Ferron begins his story around 1910, and continues it to the present day, when the youngest scion of the noble dynasty, called Eduard like his father and grandfather before him, is left in penury. Unlike his ancestors he does not live in the castle of Enghuizen itself, but in the hayloft of the coachhouse. His parents’ house has meanwhile - o tempora o mores - been transformed into an appalling conference centre.

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Works of Mercy

(De Bezige Bij, 2003, 256 pages)

Van Louis Ferron verschijnt vrijwel ieder jaar een boek. Toch gaat dat nooit met tromgeroffel gepaard. Onterecht, zo blijkt maar weer met Werken van barmhartigheid. Deze roman sluit aan bij actuele maatschappelijke onrust, waardoor je haast denkt, of hoopt, dat wie de werken van Ferron leest de wereld anders leert aanschouwen. Oorlogstrauma’s, politiek-maatschappelijk engagement, het zijn thema’s die deze schrijver aankleven.

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