British humor is known to be gallows humor. So are the reactions of British authors to Brexit. The future foretold by writers after the United Kingdom leaves the European Union is grotesque, and at times bleak. This not only hits the nerve of the times, but also right in the heart of the British and that of lovers of Great Britain.
Anyone visiting bookstores in Great Britain at the moment cannot ignore the Brexit literature. Bulging bookshelves seem to almost bend under their load. From comics to survival guides, the Brexit books seem to have a suitable subject area ready for every reader. But the shelves of German-language bookstores are also filling up with the exit literature. Because not only the British are wondering what the future of Great Britain could look like after its exit from the EU, the whole world is watching the bizarre discussions about Brexit, which can hardly be surpassed.
So it is hardly surprising that the literary world reacts to this. The authors sometimes took a cynical, humorous look at what was happening, but the concerns and fears of the population also appear between the lines and thus become more tangible for the reader.
The wall - fear and hope
John Lanchester novel The wall* takes place in a world that lies somewhere between a dystopia and a utopia. If you prefer literature that has already been translated into German, you should pay special attention to this Brexit novel. Not only do worries and fears about Brexit play a major role here, general political disputes and the flow of refugees are skilfully woven into the story of the novel by Lanchester. The world of novels takes the reader to an England that we have never met before.
A wall surrounds the island and is defended against intruders with full commitment to the residents. The foreign should be stopped and whoever does not submit to the fight will be killed.
In their helplessness, the book characters seem almost emotionally cold, but despite these uncomfortable, even mechanical behaviors, Lanchester manages to break the gloomy reading mood by allowing feelings such as love and trust to flow in.
The wall was eagerly awaited by many readers, and Lanchester's predecessor, Capital, had already become one of the most discussed novels in Great Britain.
The novel Die Mauer is available in German-language bookshops at the current price of 24 euros. The novel's capital for currently 25 euros.
Enid Blyton's Brexit Adventure
The Five Friends Brexit stories by Bruno Vinecent Five on Brexit Island and Five Escape Brexit Island seem bizarre but all the more humorous.
For fans of the successful author Enid Blyton it has not been news for a long time, in the publishing house Hodder & Stoughton several Enid Blyton Stories for Grown Ups - Enid Blyton stories for adults - have already been published under various explosive titles. The protagonists are always the popular Five Friends, who have to face the adult problems of modernity. They live gluten-free or turn their backs on alcohol, try their hand at the helicopter parents project and attend a seminar for managers. Some of these popular titles have already been translated into German.
The fact that the Five Friends are now addressing the issue of leaving the European Union is not surprising for the islanders and lovers of black humor, but it could seem inappropriate to some seriously serious readers.
So far, the satirical adventure books Five on Brexit Island and Five Escape Brexit Island have been published on the subject of Brexit. They have not yet been translated into German.
The price of both books is currently 8,99 euros.
Ladybird Books goes Brexit
In addition to one Brexit cartoon* from Penguin, readers of well-known children's and youth literature can also look forward to a continuation of the well-known British children's book series Ladybird Books in Brexit style.
Ladybird Books have a long tradition in Great Britain. Comparable to the Was ist Was book series, which is popular in German-speaking countries, they explain our world and its functions to the children of the islanders. The book authors Jason Hazeley and Joel Morris have the traditional children's books appear on the book market today as satirical Ladybird Books for Grown Ups.
The richly illustrated explanatory book does what it is supposed to do in an idiosyncratic, almost bitter way. It explains Brexit and lets the islanders have their say. Of course, not without serious criticism, which is cleverly woven in in a humorous way: The book is printed in England, but when it rains it could happen that it also happens in Italy.
“Leaving was the will of the people,” sighs Angelica's father. He voted to leave. Angelica voted to remain, but she feels the same way. “It is the will of the people,” she sighs. They stare at the ducks. They like the ducks. Ducks are better than people. "Source: The Story of Brexit a Ladybirds for Grown Ups
The English language book The Story of Brexit a Ladybirds* for Grown Ups is currently available for 7,39 euros.
In an emergency: Exit Brexit
The first books about fleeing the island are now also available on the German-language book market. This is how the author and Guardian correspondent Kate Connolly describes in her novel Exit Brexit: How I became a German, how she left the island and applied for a German passport in response to Brexit, as well as her personal and legal hurdles associated with it.
Connolly not only gives a humorous narrative insight into how she herself perceives the current political situation in Great Britain, but also illustrates the reader's image of the English about the German population. In addition, she explains the basics of Brexit in a playful way.
The book Exit Brexit*: How I became German is currently available for 19,00 euros in German bookshops.
More interesting Brexit books
An overview of other titles published on the German-speaking book market:
The British are crazy*: The book on Brexit by Johann-Günther König
A comprehensive overview volume that aims to explain Brexit, its origin and its consequences on the basis of facts.
The hardback edition is available for EUR 10,00.
End of the line Brexit* by Ralf Grabuschnig
Should describe why the Brexit was not a surprise and at the same time give insights into the past of Great Britain.
The book is available in paperback for EUR 18,95.
Brexit mania* - The Story of Alienation: Why Britain Voted Brexit by Gabriel Rath
It is intended to show why Brexit was predictable and why it came unexpectedly despite it.
The hardcover is available for EUR 20,00.
Accidentally Brexit*: European Union between disintegration and the new EU by Paul JJ Welfens
Should answer current questions about Brexit and take a look at possible consequences for the German and the entire global economy.
The hardback edition is available for EUR 19,99.