New book about Hitler a bestseller in Germany

Er Ist Wieder Da, Hilter, comedy, bestseller, german, controversy, new book Er Ist Wieder Da (He's Back) - a comedy about Adolf Hitler returning to Berlin in the summer of 2011 - is topping bestseller lists but creating controversy in Germany and soon the world no doubt with translations coming in more than 15 languages.

Author Timur Vermes, defending his book against criticism that Germans too often absolve themselves by blaming Hitler for everything, says this is why he wrote the book.

"Often, we tell ourselves that if a new Hitler came along, it would be easy to stop him. I tried to show the opposite – that even today, Hitler might be successful. Just in a different way.”

"To present him as a monster is to call those who voted for him idiots. And that reassures us. We tell ourselves that today we are smarter. We would never elect a monster or a clown. But at the time, people where just as smart as us – this is what is so painful."

Many Germans, including book critics, are enjoying the humour of Er Ist Wieder Da.

"This book is so funny that you can’t let go,” says Peter Hetzel, a German TV book critic.

The book is popular despite its length - "396 pages written in the dry and dark style of Mein Kampf, with rambling inner monologues" and its expensive (b German standards) price at 19.33 euros. This is "an allusion to the year Hitler rose to power".

See WorldCrunch's translation of a Le Temps article on Er Ist Wieder Da.


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