My debut novel „Winternähe" was published in July 2015 by S.Fischer. It was awarded with the "Uwe Johnson prize" for emerging writers and nominated for the "aspekte literature prize" for "best debut novel" as well. Please find an english translation of 15 pages here and all reviews here.
ABOUT THE NOVEL
Who decides who we are? Is it our heritage ? False friends? Orthodox rabbis? The voice of a young Jewish generation, telling the story of life between Berlin and Tel Aviv, between parties and the war in Gaza.
My name is Lola. I am a German; I am a Jew. And the only one who has any right to draw a Hitler moustache on my face is me. I’m fed up with other people deciding who I am and who I’m not. I decide what hurts me and what doesn’t. Lola’s grandparents survived the Holocaust – but she is expected to keep her cool in the face of anti-Semitic jokes. She doesn’t stand for it. She lives in Berlin; in the summer of 2014, during the war, she travels to Tel Aviv. With rage, wit, and unbridled passion, Lola searches for a life of her own.
UWE JOHNSON PRIZE FOR EMERGING WRITERS
Mirna Funk was awarded the 2015 Uwe Johnson Prize for Emerging Writers. The judges wrote:
“Mirna Funk’s first novel is a text that (…) confronts ‘simple truths.’ One realizes that an author is at work here for whom writing is something like a ‘truth-finding process.’ It is similar to Uwe Johnson’s work on memory and the Shoah. The characters come face to face with guilt and betrayal. Mirna Funk uses documentary material, integrating authentic facts into her fiction. Her aim is to look at a matter with all its edges and corners and see how they are interrelated. Just as Gesine Cresspahl says in Johnson’s Anniversaries. (…) Mirna Funk raises a number of questions about the characters in her novel, which might well have gained Uwe Johnson’s approval: What has brought us to the current situation and in what way are we dependent on the course of time? Do we want to live this way, and why not? Mirna Funk also adds a global perspective with her novel, telling us about latent anti-Semitism in Europe, playing out controversies, yet maintaining narrative consistency. And not least, her novel fascinates readers through what could be called sensual narration. That makes her different from Uwe Johnson.”
“Winternähe is an important novel; the most radical of comparable novels by German-speaking authors of the “third generation” addressing Jewish identity. We ought to take seriously what Mirna Funk has to say about Germany. And feel repeatedly challenged by her successful literary treatment of a concept of history that proclaims the present as a permanent intervention of what lies behind us, particularly with regard to German-Jewish-Israeli relations.” Deutschlandradio Kultur
“Funk has written a novel about a search for identity in which the past is not over for anybody.”
Tobias Becker, KulturSpiegel, August 2015
“This book is simply great on so many interrelated levels! […] All in writing so close-up, contemporary, and personal that the book is unputdownable.”
rbb, Radio Fritz, 29.7.2015
“With power and wit and verve, […] edgy and polemical and gripping […] sensuous and multi-layered and wise […] provocative and stirring.”
Alexander Solloch, NDR Kultur, July 29, 2015
“This is a gripping and topical novel in a style that is convincing through its fast-moving pace and strong images.” Claudia Erdheim, Die Presse, July 25, 2015
“Serious, ironic, worth reading.”
Thomas Andre, Spiegel Online, July 21, 2015