Author(s): Erich Maria Remarque
From the detention centre on Ellis Island, Ludwig Somner looks across a small stretch of water to the glittering towers of New York, which whisper seductively of freedom after so many years of wandering through a perlious, suffering Europe. Remarque's final novel, left unfinished at his death, tells of the precarious life of the refugee - life lived in hotel lobbies, on false passports, the strange, ill-assorted refugee community held together by an unspeakable past. For Somner, each new luxury - ice cream served in drugstores, bright shop windows, art, a new suit, a new romance - has a bittersweet edge. Memories of war and inhumanity continue to resurface even in this peaceful promised land. A haunting snapshot of a unique time, place and predicament, this is another powerful comment from Remarque on the devastating effects of war.
The final, unfinished novel by the author of All Quiet on the Western Front - a dreamlike, powerfully moving account of an emigrant's experience of New York during World War II.
Erich Maria Remarque was born in 1899. He fought and was injured in the trenches in the First World War when he was eighteen years old. He was exiled and his works were burnt by the Nazis. He lived in America and Switzerland and married and divorced his first wife twice before marrying the celebrated Hollywood actress Paulette Goddard. He published several novels after All Quiet on the Western Front, the most famous of which is The Road Back. He died in 1970.