A Sense of the Beginning by Norbert Gstrein

A Sense of the Beginning

Norbert Gstrein

Make sure you have plenty of time for this densely written story of one intense summer and its sinister repercussions. It poses a question: is teacher Anton responsible for the suspected radical religious and political actions of Daniel, a former student? Town gossip thinks so, but Daniel never appears in person, & we have to rely on Anton's version of events. Were his own motives in the relationship really innocent? And just how reliable is he?


I saw again in my mind's eye how Daniel had once run, squealing like a child, into the shallow water by the bank and then directly along the water-line upriver, rowing with his arms or, more accurately, flapping, looking as if he was on the point of taking off, throwing his legs right and left, and with me right behind him. I had thought it was an invitation, and had run after him and then, in a sudden surrender, I had thrown my arms around him and held him tight for a moment, maybe a bit longer than a moment, yes, much longer in my memory.

  • The Lantern Bearers by Ronald Frame
  • The English Years by Norbert Gstrein

Books with similar mood

The Fishermen

Chigozie Obioma

A Book of Science and Antiquities

Thomas Keneally

Crystal Wedding

Xu Xiaobin

Blood Data

Lury. Gibson

Bad Boy Brawly Brown

Walter Mosley

Altered Land

Jules Hardy


Marilynne Robinson

Double Vision

Tricia Sullivan

The Star Fraction

Ken Macleod

A Stranger City

Linda Grant

In the Distance

Hernan Diaz

Our Memory Like Dust

Gavin Chait

Do Not Say We Have Nothing

Madeleine Thien

Call It Dog

Marli Roode


Wu Ming

How the Soldier Repairs the Gramophone

Sasa Stanisic

Calling Out For You!

Karin Fossum

War and Turpentine

Stefan Hertmans

The Spider King's Daughter

Chibundu Onuzo

Kith and Kin

Stevie Davies

The Dogs of Riga

Henning Mankell

Alice and the Fly

James Rice

The Tea Lords

Hella S Haasse

An Unfinished Business

Boualem Sansal

London and the South-east

David Szalay

The Return

Hakan Nesser

The Other Side of the Mountain

Erendiz Atasu


Dai Vaughan

Small Days and Nights

Tishani Doshi

Star of the North

D B John

Anatomy of a Soldier

Harry Parker

Talk of the Town

Jacob Polley


Dave Boling

Nine Nights

Bernardo Carvalho

Mr Vogel

Lloyd Jones

The Mysteries

Robert McGill

Unreal City

Tony Hanania

Broken Verses

Kamila Shamsie

The Delivery Room

Sylvia Brownrigg

The Last Pilot

Benjamin Johncock

Everything I Never Told You

Celeste Ng

The Missing File

D A Mishani

The Blindman's Garden

Nadeem Aslam

The Hunger Angel

Herta Muller

The Bishop's Man

Linden MacIntyre

Burma Boy

Biyi Bandele

The Saladin Murders

Matt Rees


Roger Hubank


Jane Rogers