When you’re out of money but there’s still plenty of month left to go, you’ve got to get a bit creative.
Badly paid jobs, divorces; the highs and lows of life as an artist or a reckless propensity for the finer things in life – the reasons for poverty in old age are as varied as the women themselves, but the only remedies are creativity and solidarity. Erika, a retired teacher, Lilli, an unsuccessful musician, Anna, a widowed spendthrift, and Ursula, a nurse with a fatal fondness for exotic love affairs, set up ‘Learn with Gran’, organise flea markets, bake cakes and cultivate Erika’s allotment. When that isn’t enough, they decide to try their luck with rather less legitimate tactics …
With courage, humour and honesty, four women confront the big question of what kind of life we should, can and want to have in our old age.
Four women at the end of a life stage – and at the beginning of a new one, in which they strike out on an unconventional path with humour and solidarity. Ella finds herself alone in her large period apartment. Finally alone? Or lonely after all? There's Rada, the Rumanian carer of her deceased husband, and Ella's sister, the colourful Maggie, who has returned after her international career. And there’s her neighbour Luise, who's been left for a younger woman. What kind of life do they want to have in their old age? What's possible? What's permitted? Will they be invisible or invincible? Fulfilled or frustrated? And most importantly – will they each live alone or all together? Their answer is brave and unconventional – and soon Ella's large apartment is full of life and heated discussions about politics, family ... and sex.
A courageous and deeply personal novel about strong women and the fight for a life after survival
Born into a Jewish pre-war family in Vienna, Fritzi’s childhood is characterised by visits to the Viennese Prater and early romances. As a young woman, she flees to England to escape Nazi persecution. She marries Theo, returns to Vienna and is a vivacious and warm-hearted mother to her daughter Lea. But sometimes, Fritzi is so overcome with a nameless sorrow that she cannot get out of bed in the morning. Later, her daughter Lea’s life also seems to be a success, full to the brim with marriage, children, grandchildren and career. Yet she too is haunted by dark dreams and family memories. When more and more people arrive in Vienna fleeing war and terror in Syria and Afghanistan, this challenges Lea’s feeling of helplessness and her successful life threatens to fall apart.
Susanne Scholl tells a touching and humorous story of waiting and dreaming and of moments of truth that happen when we least expect them.
Lilly spends seven summers with her Italian friends on Sardinia, savoring the uncomplicated, delightful air of an endless vacation – and time spent with Gianni, who is the opposite of a Latin lover, but impossible to forget. Seven winters bring Lilly back to Vienna and the unpleasant routine of her daily life: Her ex-husband has a new, young girlfriend, her best friend dies of cancer, and her father comes out of the closet and writes a tell-all book about it. And so Lilly escapes into a fantasy world, dreaming of life with Gianni, of having a child. But the last summer forces her to finally bring her wishes and reality face to face.
An encounter between two women, two cultures, to fates that could not be anymore different.
Emma, senior citizen in Vienna, lives in a world where things aren't like they used to be: her new Turkish daughter-in-law is pregnant, her granddaughter Luzie wears jeans that are way too tight and her ex-husband Georg is killed by a well-deserved stroke.
Sarema is from Grozny. She is only alive thanks to her desperate courage: the Chechen War has left her with nothing, but she and her son Shamil manage to escape to Austria with the help of human smugglers. Sarema is seeking asylum and Emma needs help at home after an accident. Their paths cross, their lives connect – how far will Emma go to help Sarema?