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Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer

Classicist Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer (b. 1968) has published poetry, stage plays, essays, columns, travelogues, stories, political satires and four novels written in the spirit of Rabelais. In Het ware leven, een roman (Real Life. A Novel, 2006) he played a game with world literature and divided the critics. La Superba (2014) showed Pfeijffer’s politically engaged side and won him the Libris Literature Prize. In 2017 his novel Peachez, A Romance came out, followed, in 2018, by his bestselling novel Grand Hotel Europa, which sold 320,000 copies in the Netherlands and will appear in 20 languages.

La Superba

La Superba

(De Arbeiderspers, 2013, 348 pagina's)

This novel is set in Genoa, the labyrinthine port city (nicknamed ‘the Superb’) where the author has been living for the past five years. Migration is the central theme of this autobiographical story about a writer who becomes trapped in his walk on the wild side.

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I’d said that anyway

(De Arbeiderspers, 2016)

After reading Classics and a stint of teaching at Leiden University, Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer decided that the bohemian lifestyle of a poet, writer and journalist suited him better. His first book of poems, in 1998, earned him the C. Buddingh’ Prize; his sixth collection scored no less than a hattrick of major Dutch poetry awards this year.

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Peachez. een romance

Peachez. een romance

(De Arbeiderspers, 2017, 174 pagina's)

‘The Professor, the Bikini Model and the Suitcase Full of Trouble’ ran the headline in The New York Times in 2013, above an article about an Oxford professor of particle physics, Paul Frampton, who became the victim of ‘catfishing’. Surfing the internet, the physicist allowed himself to be tempted into committing a criminal offence by a busty photo model. At least, so he thought. Behind the model lurked a criminal cyber gang.

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Grand Hotel Europa

Grand Hotel Europa

(De Arbeiderspers, 2018, 547 pagina's)

An author by the name of Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer leaves Venice and moves into the stately Grand Hotel Europa for an indefinite period. His relationship with Clio, a clever hot-blooded art historian, has just fallen apart. In the hotel, where a sense of long-lost glory hangs in the air, he reconstructs exactly what went wrong with Clio and befriends the eccentric hotel staff and guests along the way.

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Monterosso mon amour

Monterosso mon amour

(De Arbeiderspers, 2022, 96 pagina's)

Carmen is married to a boring man, having sacrificed her own ambitions for his second-rate career. Once, she ran a feminist bookstore; now, she organises literary evenings for the local library. No longer the prettiest girl in the class, she is now just a childless librarian. Like Emma Bovary, Carmen reads novels that express the depth of human emotion in order to escape reality.

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