A guide to POTSDAM
Five great books set in VIENNA
24th July 2020
Vienna is the latest city for us to visit in our ‘Great books set in…’ series. Five great books set in VIENNA
‘The streets of Vienna are paved with culture, the streets of other cities with asphalt’ – Karl Kraus
The Tobacconist by Robert Seethaler
When seventeen-year-old Franz exchanges his home in the idyllic beauty of the Austrian lake district for the bustle of Vienna, his homesickness quickly dissolves amidst the thrum of the city. In his role as apprentice to the elderly tobacconist Otto Trsnyek, he will soon be supplying the great and good of Vienna with their newspapers and cigarettes. Among the regulars is a Professor Freud, whose predilection for cigars and occasional willingness to dispense romantic advice will forge a bond between him and young Franz.
It is 1937. In a matter of months Germany will annex Austria and the storm that has been threatening to engulf the little tobacconist will descend, leaving the lives of Franz, Otto and Professor Freud irredeemably changed.
Amadeus by Peter Shaffer
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is a genius, the most brilliant musician the world will ever see. But the court of eighteenth-century Vienna doesn’t recognize his talents – only Antonio Salieri, the Court Composer, does, and he is tortured by what he hears.
Seething with rage at the genius of this flippant buffoon and suddenly aware of his own mediocrity, Salieri declares war and sets out to destroy the man he sees as God’s instrument on earth.
Peter Shaffer’s award-winning play is a rich, exuberant portrayal of a God-like man among mortals, and lives destroyed by envy.
A Woman of Note by Carol M. Cram
Virtuoso pianist Isabette Grüber captivates audiences in the salons and concert halls of early nineteenth-century Vienna. Yet in a profession dominated by men, Isabette longs to compose and play her own music—a secret she keeps from both her lascivious manager and her resentful mother. She meets and loves Amelia Mason, a dazzling American singer with her own secrets, and Josef Hauser, an ambitious young composer. But even they cannot fully comprehend the depths of Isabette’s talent.
Her ambitions come with a price when Isabette embarks on a journey that delicately walks the line between duty and passion. Amid heartbreak and sacrifice, music remains her one constant. With cameos from classical music figures such as Chopin, Schubert, and Berlioz, A Woman of Note is an intricately crafted and fascinating tale about one woman’s struggle to find her soul’s song in a dissonant world.
Requiem in Vienna by J Sydney Jones
In the 1890s, a series of accidents plague Vienna’s Court Opera and then a singer is killed during rehearsals of a new production.
It would seem that someone is trying to murder Gustav Mahler. And Mahler may not be the first musical genius to have been targeted! Karl Werthen is engaged to help stop the attacks and with associates he delves into Vienna’s rich society of musicians to discover the identity of the person who has targeted one of Austria’s best-known artists.
A mystery that will leave you guessing until the end.
Diplomatic Impunity by Jaya Gulhaugen
1956. It is the time of the Hungarian Revolution and the KGB loom ominously in the background.
The Gilman family has just arrived and are getting settled in the city, he a CIA agent and Peggy is wife, mother and amateur sleuth. Ballrooms are in full swing coming up to Christmas and then there is a death – in true mystery style there are clues, red herrings and interesting detail.
Want to find more books set in VIENNA? Check out our database!
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