Patrick Süskind: Die Geschichte von Herrn Sommer [The Story of Mr Sommer]

(914 words)
  • Jeffrey T. Adams (University of North Carolina, Greensboro)

After the dark story of Grenouille, the serial killer of Perfume (1985), and the Kafkaesque tale of Jonathan Noel, the reclusive protagonist of The Pigeon (1987), Süskind takes a different tack in The Story of Mr. Sommer (1991), presenting the reader with a charming portrayal of boyhood innocence and experience. Written as a children’s tale for adults (featuring abundant drawings by the French artist Sempe), Süskind’s novella evokes not only memories of childhood, when mighty flights of imagination were still possible and climbing trees was still a lofty aspiration, but also exudes a fairy-tale atmosphere reminiscent of the Brothers Grimm. While typical scenes from a young boy’s life …

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Adams, Jeffrey T.. "Die Geschichte von Herrn Sommer". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 19 July 2005
[, accessed 25 November 2015.]