HERE IS BERLIN
"Stim strolls through the streets of contemporary Berlin like in the last century Fellini strolled through his Rome and Walter Benjamin through Paris, these 'landscapes built of sheer life' (Hugo von Hofmannsthal). Being the alert, cerebral and subtle observer he is, he draws attention to the moods, voices, smells, colors and sounds of the city."
"Sometimes it takes the outsider's view to make you appreciate your own city. During his stay here, Stim roamed all around town, eyes and ears wide open. What came of it is an enthusiastic, clever and for the most part consistent essay on what in his view today is the most amazing city of Europe."
"The other view of Berlin: Finally there's an author who explains to us what we didn't know about the city before – and why Berlin is nevertheless interesting."
"A compelling essay. Stim paints emblematic pictures of the New Berlin, dissects the city and serves it to the reader on a plate, ready for instant enjoyment."
"Wise reflections, bizarre and funny observations, written in a highly erudite, but always accessible style – this essay is a recommendation for anyone who travels to Berlin for the first time as well as for those who've been there and think there's nothing left to discover."
"The history of perpetual change and the somewhat liberating uncertainty that comes with it: Stim has managed to capture Berlin's innermost core."
"Discovering a modern metropolis: The best thing about this essay is that it does not merely describe the new Berlin, but that it actually dissects it in the most unusual way."
"A highly analytical, yet deeply personal take on the city. The vibe, the looks, the smells: With his open and curious glance, JM Stim is taking the reader by the hand and guides him through the sensations the city has to offer."
"Refreshingly intelligent and extremely insightful: If there is a definitive book on Berlin after the fall of the wall, nothing comes closer than Stim's essay."
"'Here is Berlin' or trying to catch the rain with one's hands: A clever, illuminating, highly personal and knowledgeable work that combines anecdotes, experiences and hard facts to convey a feeling of what this mess that we call contemporary Berlin is."
"Capturing the heart of a city: It it quite safe to say that 'Here is Berlin' is the first successful attempt to provide visitors as well as natives with an overall view of today's Berlin. Everyone who wants to get a real understanding for the vibe of the place as it is today should read this book."
"'Here is Berlin' is simply a must-read for everyone who is coming to the city for the first time – or before one travels there for the tenth time. Unusual perspectives, new discoveries: When it comes to the soul of the New Berlin, this book provides the ultimate key to it."
"Stim is a flaneur in perhaps the most classic sense of the word (…) Though written in a highly personal and erudite style, the reader quickly senses where the author's real sympathies lie: with the people who have to struggle every day just to get by, with the downtrodden and the nameless, whose creativity, unruliness and will to refuse to submission to the logic of modern-day-capitalism that includes all forms of uniformed 'alternativeness'."
"If in the distant future one wants to know why at the beginning of the 21st century so many people took such a heavy interest in the city of Berlin, they can read it here in the most incisive way."
"Fine observations, sharp analyses, personal experiences, written in a highly erudite but always comprehensive way. The – for all the right reasons – ultimate book about one of the most unique places of the 21st century."
"A fascinating essay on the nature of the formerly divided city, written in the tradition of a true flaneur. "
"Capturing the soul of a city: When it comes to literary non-fiction, JM Stim's 'Here is Berlin' is nothing less than a modern masterpiece."
"A snapshot of a city that is constantly in motion. The author manages to put his readers right into the middle of a smoke-filled Berlin bar, makes them feel the chill of a place of worship and inhale the odors of the coffee houses. While he draws on his cigarette, his thoughts drift off from the hustle and bustle around him, and he delves deep into the history of one the most unique places of contemporary Europe."
“Those who come here today don't have to earn their place, defend their turf, fight for their very existence. New Berlin, as I like to call the city that came into being in 1989, is the last place in the Western world that tolerates everything, doesn't compel anyone to do anything, and forgives all.”
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