An Answer From the Silence: A Story from the Mountains


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Author: Max Frisch
Translated by Mike Mitchell

9780857427106 | PB | pp. 120 | 2019 | Seagull Books

In An Answer From the Silence the protagonist, not yet ready to settle down, decides to go on an adventure to the Alps to climb the unclimbed North Ridge.

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When this novel begins, the protagonist has just turned thirty, is engaged to be married and about to start work as a teacher. Frightened by the idea of settling down, he journeys to the Alps in a do-or-die effort to climb the unclimbed North Ridge, and by doing so prove he is not ordinary. However, he returns not in triumph but in frostbitten shock, having come dangerously close to death. This personal early novel reflects a crisis in Max Frisch’s own life, and perhaps because of this intimate connection, he refused to allow it to be included in his Collected Works in the 1970s. Now available in English, this distinctive book will thrill fans of Frisch’s other works.


Max Frisch
Translator: Mike Mitchell




Seagull Books





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About the Contributors

The author (1911–91) was one of the giants of twentieth-century literature, achieving fame as a novelist, playwright, diarist, and essayist. His works include Andorra, I’m Not Stiller, A Wilderness of Mirrors and Man in the Holocene. Frisch was one of the founders of Gruppe Olten, and was awarded the Neustadt International Prize for Literature in 1986.

For many years the translator was a lecturer in German with a special interest in Austrian literature. He has worked as a literary translator since 1995. He was awarded the 1998 Schlegel-Tieck Prize for his translation of Herbert Rosendorfer’s Letters Back to Ancient China. For Seagull Books, he has translated Ingeborg Bachmann’s War Diary (2011) and The Radio Family (2014), Max Frisch’s An Answer from the Silence (2011) and Draft for a Third Sketchbook (2013), Hans Magnus Enzensberger’s Tumult (2017) and Anarchy’s Brief Summer (2019), Peter Handke’s Till Day You do Part or A Question of Light (2009), Ralf Rothmann’s Fire Doesn’t Burn (2012), and Thomas Lehr’s September (2013).


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