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Kunstlers in paradise

ISBN: 9781250892492
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Henry Holt (ADS)
Origin: US
Release Date: June, 2024

Book Details

For years Mamie Kunstler, ninety-three years old, as clever and glamorous as ever, has lived happily in her bungalow in Venice, California, with her inscrutable housekeeper and her gigantic St. Bernard. Their tranquility is upended when Mamie’s grandson Julian arrives from New York City. Like many a twentysomething, he has come to seek his fortune in Hollywood. But it is 2020, the global pandemic sweeps in, and Julian’s short visit suddenly has no end in sight. Mamie was only eleven when the Kunstlers escaped Vienna in 1939. They made their way, stunned and overwhelmed, to sunny, surreal Los Angeles, where they joined a colony of distinguished Jewish musicians, writers, and intellectuals also escaping Hitler. Now, faced with months of lockdown and a willing listener, Mamie begins to tell Julian the buried stories of her years in Los Angeles: her escapades with eminent emigres like Arnold Schoenberg, Christopher Isherwood, Thomas Mann. Oh, and Greta Garbo. While the pandemic cuts Julian off from the life he knows, Mamie’s tales open up a world of lives that came before him. They reveal to him just how much the past holds of the future.