Burning Secret

Burning Secret

3.91 (8,679 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author)  , Translated by 

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Description

Burning Secret (Brennendes Geheimnis) is a darkly compelling coming-of-age story-a tale of seduction, jealousy and betrayal from the master of the novella, Stefan Zweig

A suave baron takes a fancy to twelve-year-old Edgar's mother, while the three are holidaying in an Austrian mountain resort. His initial advances rejected, the baron befriends Edgar in order to get closer to the woman he desires. The initially unsuspecting child soon senses something is amiss, but has no idea of the burning secret that is driving the affair, and that will soon change his life for ever.

'The rediscovery of this extraordinary writer could well be on a par with last year's refinding of the long-lost Stoner, by John Williams, and which similarly could pluck his name out of a dusty obscurity.' Simon Winchester, Telegraph

Breathtaking ... the final sentence is unlike anything I have ever read before; and transforms not only the book, but, in a way, the reader as well. '
- Nicholas Lezard, The Guardian

Zweig is the most adult of writers; civilised, urbane, but never jaded or cynical; a realist who none the less believed in the possibility-the necessity-of empathy.'
- The Independent

Stefan Zweig (1881-1942) was born in Vienna, into a wealthy Austrian-Jewish family. He studied in Berlin and Vienna and was first known as a poet and translator, then as a biographer. Zweig travelled widely, living in Salzburg between the wars, and was an international bestseller with a string of hugely popular novellas including Letter from an Unknown Woman, Amok and Fear.

In 1934, with the rise of Nazism, he moved to London, where he wrote his only novel Beware of Pity. He later moved on to Bath, taking British citizenship after the outbreak of the Second World War. With the fall of France in 1940 Zweig left Britain for New York, before settling in Brazil, where in 1942 he and his wife were found dead in an apparent double suicide.

Much of his work is available from Pushkin Press.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 128 pages
  • 120 x 165 x 15.24mm | 136.08g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • Illustrations
  • 1901285855
  • 9781901285857
  • 337,416

Review Text

"What did Zweig have that brought him the fanatical devotion of millions of readers, the admiration of Herman Hesse, the invitation to give the eulogy at the funeral of Sigmund Freud? To learn that, we would have to have a biography that illuminated all aspects of his work, that read all of his books, and that challenged, rather than accepted, the apparent modesty of his statements about his life and work." - Benjamin Moser, Bookforum

"[ Burning Secret is] a devastatingly accurate picture of childhood on the cusp of adolescent disillusion." - Gary Indiana, Bookforum

"Breathtaking... the final sentence is unlike anything I have ever read before; and transforms not only the book, but, in a way, the reader as well." - Nicholas Lezard, Guardian

"Zweig is the most adult of writers; civilised, urbane, but never jaded or cynical; a realist who none the less believed in the possibility-the necessity-of empathy." - Independent

"Touching and delightful. Those adjectives are not meant as faint praise. Zweig may be especially appealing now because rather than being a progenitor of big ideas, he was a serious entertainer, and an ardent and careful observer of habits, foibles, passions and mistakes." - A.O. Scott, The New York Times
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Review quote

Breathtaking... the final sentence is unlike anything I have ever read before; and transforms not only the book, but, in a way, the reader as well -- Nicholas Lezard The Guardian Zweig is the most adult of writers; civilised, urbane, but never jaded or cynical; a realist who none the less believed in the possibility-the necessity-of empathy The Independent
show more

About Stefan Zweig

Stefan Zweig (1881-1942) was born in Vienna, into a wealthy Austrian-Jewish family. He studied in Berlin and Vienna and was first known as a poet and translator, then as a biographer. Zweig travelled widely, living in Salzburg between the wars, and was an international bestseller with a string of hugely popular novellas including Letter from an Unknown Woman, Amok and Fear.
In 1934, with the rise of Nazism, he moved to London, where he wrote his only novel Beware of Pity. He later moved on to Bath, taking British citizenship after the outbreak of the Second World War. With the fall of France in 1940 Zweig left Britain for New York, before settling in Brazil, where in 1942 he and his wife were found dead in an apparent double suicide.
Much of his work is available from Pushkin Press.
show more

Rating details

8,679 ratings
3.91 out of 5 stars
5 28% (2,398)
4 43% (3,695)
3 24% (2,108)
2 5% (393)
1 1% (85)
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