Literary Berlin: a visual tour of the finest literature highlights
About a year ago Elina was invited to tour Berlin. They promised her exclusive looks and meetings and food so naturally she said #fuckyeah.
We started in Kreuzberg at Kirchner Kommunikation headquarters, the probably nicest people on earth. That's easy though because they have a kick ass all female team. So I assume their job is to touch and smell books all day.
There we got to meet Christina Röckl who is not only an amazing illustrator, but also an award winning one. Good for her. Her book "Und dann platzt der Kopf" is beyond beautiful. She asked a bunch of elementary school kids about their definition for the human soul, and boy, did they give her answers. Makes me teary eyed just thinking about it. Follow her on Instagram, she is cute AF.
Then we went on to my personal favourite: the Hedayat bookstore by Abbas Maroufi, also author of 'Fereydun hatte drei Söhne'. It is named after the author Sadegh Hedayat, who killed himself in Paris, but right before doing so promised to return to Berlin to open up a bookstore. Goosebumps, I know. Maroufi had to leave Iran but was melancholic when talking about the country he left behind. Hedayat is the largest Persian bookstore outside of Iran.
At the next stop we met Bettina Baltschev to talk about her book on the Querido Publishing House that published German authors who were exiled during the Nazi regime. Berenberg basically is the go to place for non fiction lovers. They're thin, well written, well researched documentaries in a beautiful book cover. I have reviewed one of their books on German colonialism before.
Last but not least we went to the independent publishing house for poetry. Always a good time, especially when we got to listen to Lea Schneider read from her anthology 'Chinabox' of modern Chinese poems and poets (in Chinese and German).