Heinrich Böll

Sometimes You Want To Whimper Like A Child. The War Diaries, 1943-1945

Man möchte manchmal wimmern wie ein Kind

Sometimes You Want To Whimper Like A Child. The War Diaries, 1943-1945

#4 Most Beautiful Books 2018 (Stiftung Deutsche Buchkunst)

Concisely, associatively and at times downright lyrically Heinrich Böll records what concerns, torments and keeps him going him during the final years of the war. Unlike his wartime letters, which describe what happened to him coherently but which he knew had to get past the censors, here Böll captures in shorthand what distinguished each day and made it stand out in the gruesome wartime routine on the front and, later, in his time as a prisoner of war. Fixed points of reference are his young wife Annemarie, whom he misses desperately, and God, whom he invokes as a source of hope and protection in the face of the horror in the trenches.

What is striking is the intensity of these sketch-like records, which show Böll struggling for spiritual integrity and self-preservation. Written in the period beginning with his departure for France, through his transfer to the Eastern Front and up until his release as a POW in Sep-tember 1945 – and published unabridged.

War Diaries


ISBN: 978-3-462-05020-2
release: 05. October 2017
352 pages, Flexcover


22,00 €
0,00 sFr
22,70 €

About the Author

In 1972, Heinrich Böll became the first German to win the Nobel Prize for literature since Thomas Mann in 1929. Born in Cologne, in 1917, Böll was reared in a liberal Catholic, pacifist family. Drafted into the Wehrmacht, he served on the Russian and French fronts and was wounded four times before he found himself in an American prison camp. After the war he began writing about his shattering experiences as a soldier. His first novel, The Train Was on Time, was published in 1949, and he went on to become one of the most prolific and important of post-war German writers. Böll served for several years as the president of International P.E.N. and was a leading defender of the intellectual freedom of writers throughout the world. He died in June 1985.

Further titles by the author:
Der Zug war pünktlich
Und sagte kein einziges Wort
Wo warst du, Adam?
Haus ohne Hüter
Das Brot der frühen Jahre
Irisches Tagebuch
Doktor Murkes gesammeltes Schweigen
Billard um halb zehn
Ansichten eines Clowns
Ende einer Dienstfahrt
Gruppenbild mit Dame
Die verlorene Ehre der Katharina Blum
Fürsorgliche Belagerung
Frauen vor Flusslandschaft
Der Engel schwieg
Der blasse Hund
Briefe aus dem Krieg 1939-1945
Widerstand ist ein Freiheitsrecht...
Köln gibt's schon, aber es ist ein Traum
Der Panzer zielte auf Kafka (The Tank Aimed at Kafka)