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The Adventures of a Bed Salesman By Michael Kumpfmuller

The Adventures of a Bed Salesman
by Michael Kumpfmuller

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In this novel, a bed salesman extraordinaire escapes creditors, mistress, wife and children by crossing the border to East Germany in 1962.
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The Adventures of a Bed Salesman Summary

The Adventures of a Bed Salesman by Michael Kumpfmuller

Heinrich Hampel is a lovable rogue. His creed is: 'There are bed salesmen who succeed because they understand beds, and there are bed salesman who succeed because they understand women. The future belongs to the latter.' Heinrich charms his way into the hearts, beds and purses of his female customers in Bavaria in the 1950s. Having persuaded them to buy the best French beds, bedding and silk sheets, Heinrich proceeds to test the quality of his goods with them personally, in their homes or even in the twilight shadows of the showroom. Turnover doubles. The long-suffering Rosa, a shoe-shop assistant elevated to Hausfrau status by a shotgun marriage to Heinrich, can tell from a glance at rumpled sheets if business or love is at hand. When Bella enters the scene, Rosa begins to worry. Heinrich buys Bella a plush riverside apartment and silences Rosa with a new Opel Kadett. These are the years of the postwar economic miracle, nothing can go wrong. But everything does, and Heinrich finds himself in crippling debt. In 1962, Heinrich crosses the border to East Germany, hoping to find a haven from his family and the evils of capitalism. His wife and children turn up like bad pennies, but Heinrich is incorrigible, and the carousel starts again. This is a classic picaresque novel written with a flair for story-telling that is both beautifully old-fashioned yet modern in its use of irony. Blackly humorous and poignant by turn, the novel showcases Kumpmuller's voice: rhythmic, absorbing, fresh and new.

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The Adventures of a Bed Salesman Reviews

Michael Kumpfmueller came over from Berlin to do an event at the Goethe Institut in London on Monday 7 October at 7pm with Tibor Fisher, turnout was goodand included Matt Thorne and Lawrence Norfolk. We organised a couple of key interviews - including Michael's first ever interview in English on the BRIANMORTON SHOW on BBC Radio Scotland. And MERIDIAN WRITING on BBC World Servicewill be interviewing him down the line from Berlin shortly. We also arrangedan early release of books and he signed copies at Waterstones Kensington High St and Waterstones Notting Hill Gate. Plus we also asked him to sign bookplates and copies for each of the hardback fiction buyers at Blackwells, Selfridges, and Waterstones Piccadilly, We've had the first excellent good reviews in THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH with a large one to come in WATERSTONE'S QUARTERLY "In human terms, the setting of the novel is quite bleak. But then the German Democratic Republic was bleak. In capturing its timbre so faithfully, and creating such a thoroughly sympathetic hero, Michael Kumpfmuller has pulled off aremarkable debut." Anthea Bell, SUNDAY TELEGRAPH 'Tragedy shaes this often comic story of a man forever on the run'Zulfikar Abbbany, THE INDEPENDENT "Through the peephole of Hampel's misadventures, whole worlds are presented here:East and West, the personal and the political. The movements of history are seen in individual disappointments, deceptions and self-deceptions: the compromises and bad choices and years that get away" DAILY TELEGRAPH "There are many ways to show that life is unfair; and this hugely successful first novel, which was published in Germany in 2000, must be one of the best. Michael Kumpfmueller, a former journalist, has pulled off a trick."TLS "This is a very pro

About Michael Kumpfmuller

Michael Kumpfmuller was born in 1961 in Munich and now lives in Berlin. He is a freelance journalist for Die Zeit, Suddeutscher Zeitung and Frankfurter Rundschau.

Additional information

The Adventures of a Bed Salesman by Michael Kumpfmuller
Michael Kumpfmuller
Used - Very Good
Orion Publishing Co
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us.