Somewhere in the North African desert, a man with no memory tries to evade his armed pursuers. Who are they? What do they want from him? If he could just recall his own identity he might have a chance of working it out.
Elsewhere, four westerners are murdered in a hippy commune and a suitcase full of worthless currency goes missing. Enter a pair of very unenthusiastic detectives, a paranoid spy whose sanity has baked away in the sun, and a beautiful blonde American with a talent for being underestimated.
Sand is a gripping thriller - part Pynchon, part Le Carre, part Coen brothers - an unsettling, caustically funny tale of pursuit and madness.
"A gripping and brilliantly funny thriller" Focus
"His was an extraordinary mind" Guardian
"A great writer. A smiling, friendly, sympathetic nihilism shines through his prose" Frankfurter Rundschau
"Enigmatic and moving" Die Zeit
Born in 1965, Wolfgang Herrndorf waited until 2010 to make his literary breakthrough with Why We Took the Car, which has sold more than two million copies in Germany, has been translated into thirty-four languages, and was made into a feature film. By this time he was already suffering from an incurable brain tumour. He continued to write for the next few years, completing Sand, which won the 2012 Leipzig Book Fair prize. When he died in 2013 he was recognized as a unique and brilliant literary talent.
Publisher: Pushkin Press
Number of pages: 448
Dimensions: 216 x 135 mm
So dazzling and original... a masterpiece... culminating in one of the greatest twists I've read Daily Telegraph Herrndorf... writes with an arresting cinematic vividness, and there is more than a whiff of Coen brothers' mayhem about the plot Sunday Times Brilliant, anarchic, darkly comic... outrageous, clever... a bravura performance... the publishers have already referenced the Coen Brothers, and to that endorsement add Quentin Tarantino Irish Times A careful subversion of the crime thriller genre... Sand is self-assured in its aim and delivery: an emphatic statement of intent TLS Herrndorf's enjoyment as he plays with our expectations is almost palpable Glasgow Herald A hit in Germany... part Coen bros, part John Le Carre Sunday Star German literary thriller that wears its intellectual cred boldly. Surreal comedy hangs a hallucinogenic pall over the reality of post-colonial North Africa in 1972, creating a confusing atmosphere around the central plot strand: who really killed the hippies in the desert commune? Sunday Times Crime Club [Wolfgang Herrndorf] wrote an earlier book, translated in English as Why We Took the Car, but Sand will be his last. It alone ought to assure him a place in twenty-first century literary history: it's bold, anarchic, blackly funny, and completely unafraid Elle Thinks (blog) Herrndorf has crafted something special here... the enigmatic Sand is the literary equivalent of a cactus: beautifully detailed, hard to get a grip on but sure to survive amid desolation and stand out sharply on a flat, monotone landscape where others sink into the dust Hits the Fan (blog) Undoubted literary merit... sustains uncertainty until the final pages, both for the reader as well as for the protagonist Crime Review Enigmatic and moving Die Zeit One of the most original and stylistically impressive German writers Neue Zurcher Zeitung A great writer. A smiling, friendly, sympathetic nihilism shines through his writing Frankfurter Rundschau He remains a witty and incredibly well read artist, who creates a great work of art as he juggles on a tightrope here with violence, death, doom, forgetting and the nothingness of existence FAZ A literary thriller... a terrific novel set in the desert Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung A gripping and marvelously comic thriller with a philosophical subtext Focus