Tyll

Author(s): Daniel Kehlmann

Staff Picks- Read our reviews below

'A masterly achievement, a work of imaginative grandeur and complete artistic control' Ian McEwan


'Brilliant and unputdownable' Salman Rushdie


He's a trickster, a player, a jester. His handshake's like a pact with the devil, his smile like a crack in the clouds; he's watching you now and he's gone when you turn. Tyll Ulenspiegel is here!


In a village like every other village in Germany, a scrawny boy balances on a rope between two trees. He's practising. He practises by the mill, by the blacksmiths; he practises in the forest at night, where the Cold Woman whispers and goblins roam. When he comes out, he will never be the same. Tyll will escape the ordinary villages. In the mines he will defy death.


On the battlefield he will run faster than cannonballs. In the courts he will trick the heads of state. As a travelling entertainer, his journey will take him across the land and into the heart of a never-ending war. A prince's doomed acceptance of the Bohemian throne has European armies lurching brutally for dominion and now the Winter King casts a sunless pall. Between the quests of fat counts, witch-hunters and scheming queens, Tyll dances his mocking fugue; exposing the folly of kings and the wisdom of fools.


With macabre humour and moving humanity, Daniel Kehlmann lifts this legend from medieval German folklore and enters him on the stage of the Thirty Years' War. When citizens become the playthings of politics and puppetry, Tyll, in his demonic grace and his thirst for freedom, is the very spirit of rebellion - a cork in water, a laugh in the dark, a hero for all time.

Daniel Kehlmann is a German author best known for his first novel Measuring the World.
Tyll is a miller’s son, and he and his sweetheart run away after his parents are persecuted for witchcraft. He has juggling and acrobatic skills and is developing his tightrope walking. He would make a great court jester.
Liz, daughter of the king of England, is in Europe to find a suitable partner. Their paths cross and she takes Tyll into her service. The temptation to become Queen of Bohemia is great and she marries the unfortunate Frederich.
The thirty year war ensues and the "Fat Count" witnesses the horror of the last battle. He is charged with finding Tyll and utilizing his powers - similar to those of a dragon. But there are only two dragons left in Europe and they haven’t been seen for hundreds of years.This novel brims with the inventiveness of David Mitchell and atmosphere of Kazuo Ishiguro. A blend of European folklore and history with a seamless translation. David

$37.99(NZD)

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Product Information

Shortlisted Booker International 2020

General Fields

  • : 9781529403664
  • : Quercus
  • : riverrun
  • : May 2019
  • : 2.8 cm x 21.6 cm x 13.5 cm
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Daniel Kehlmann
  • : Paperback
  • : 1
  • : 833.92
  • : 352