Fiction – Novels, Novellas, Short Stories

Jochen Schmidt

© C. H. Beck Verlag, München, 2017 Jochen Schmidt: Zuckersand © C. H. Beck Verlag, Munich, 2017The father who pushes his son through the urban jungle in Jochen Schmidt’s novel Zuckersand (Sugarsand) - first in a pram, then on a big bobby car and a balance bike – this father is a sure-tongued joker, at least that is one side of him. But that is just his showy side. A creative Berliner, he also has a dreamily eccentric side. While his girlfriend Klara, the child’s mother, has a proper job at the monuments office, he takes on the task of minding their offspring, his head in the clouds.
While actually working on a study about beauty, the child’s father mainly writes advertising texts for The New Housewife, a catalogue featuring products ranging from safety suction hooks to decorative beer barrels. Dull, ugly objects, despite the fact that the material world is the life theme of this sensitive kerb checker. Things of shy beauty at the wayside that offer inspiration to one‘s synapses are the clandestine main characters of this episodic novel that follows the pramtrail - magical objects such as cobblestones, pipes, vacuum cleaners, hairbands (…).
The yearning that leaves traces throughout Zuckersand is not so much for a specific family history. It rather involves an overwhelming incapacity to lose anything. This obsessive collector of moments, material states and consistencies has the urge to pick up every tiny thing – and in that, he resembles his son.

Jutta Person: „Der Erdnussgott“
© Süddeutsche Zeitung, 23 March 2017

Jochen Schmidt
C. H. Beck Verlag, Munich, 2017
ISBN 9783406705090
206 pages

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