The Tremendous World I Have Inside My Head

Franz Kafka: A Biographical Essay

Atlas & Co.




Selected Reviews

The New York Sun Review by Michael Wood, July 9, 2008


The New York Observer Review by Daniel Mallory, June 17, 2008


The New York Review of Books Review by Zadie Smith, July 17, 2008


Book Jacket Synopsis

Kafkaesque: the very word evokes tortuous bureaucracy, crushing self-doubt, and an almost unbearable inadequacy in the face of higher powers. After Kafka, it can be said, literature was not the same. In the few novels and short stories he left behind, he distilled the horrors of a new age. Kafka's is the voice of the outsider--that is, the voice of each one of us--at once defined by its affiliations and completely, utterly alone.

The product of both a transitional age (the beginning of the 20th century) and a nation in flux, Kafka spoke and wrote German in Czech territory.  He was a Jew among Christians, a non-observant Jew among believers.  Louis Begley renders with sensitivity and insight the life and work of one of the most enigmatic and intriguing figures of modern literature.

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Cover art property of Atlas & Co.
--Do Not Reproduce

Copyright 2008, Louis Begley
Art work by Peter Begley--Do Not Reproduce