This European masterpiece from the Nobel prizewinner explores the lure and degeneracy of ideas in an introverted community on the eve of World War I
Hans Castorp is 'a perfectly ordinary, if engaging young man' when he goes to visit his cousin in an exclusive sanatorium in the Swiss Alps. What should have been a three week trip turns into a seven year stay. Hans falls in love and becomes intoxicated with the ideas he hears at the clinic - ideas which will strain and crack apart in a world on the verge of the First World War.
"Magnificent... a beautiful, feverish account of obsessive love" Jonathan Coe Guardian
Thomas Mann was born in 1875 in Lubeck, of a line of prosperous and influential merchants. Mann was educated under the discipline of North German schoolmasters before working for an insurance office aged nineteen. During this time he secretly wrote his first tale, Fallen, and shortly afterwards he left the insurance office to study art and literature at the University of Munich. After a year in Rome he devoted himself exclusively to writing. He was only twenty-five when Buddenbrooks, his first major novel, was published. Before it was banned and burned by Hitler, it had sold over a million copies in Germany alone. His second great novel, The Magic Mountain, was published in 1924 and the first volume of his tetralogy Joseph and his Brothers in 1933. In 1929 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. In 1933 Thomas Mann left Germany to live in Switzerland. Then, after several previous visits, in 1938 he settled in the United States where he wrote Doctor Faustus and The Holy Sinner. Among the honours he recieved in the USA was his appointment as a Fellow of the Library of Congress. He revisited his native country in 1949 and returned to Switzerland in 1952, where The Black Swan and Confessions of Felix Krull were written and where he died in 1955.
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Thomas Mann, geb. 1875 in Lübeck, wohnte seit 1894 in München. 1933 verließ er Deutschland und lebte zuerst in der Schweiz am Zürichsee, dann in den Vereinigten Staaten, wo er 1938 eine Professur an der Universität in Princeton annahm. Später hatte er seinen Wohnsitz in Kalifornien, danach wieder in der Schweiz. Er starb in Zürich am 12. August 1955. Thomas Mann zählt zu den bedeutendsten Schriftstellern des 20. Jahrhunderts. Mit ihm erreichte der moderne deutsche Roman den Anschluss an die Weltliteratur. Manns umfangreiches und vielschichtiges Werk hat eine weltweit kaum zu übertreffende positive Resonanz gefunden. Für seinen ersten großen Roman Die Buddenbrooks erhielt er 1929 den Nobelpreis für Literatur.