Working on his last two novels was downright depressing, Colson Whitehead said in an interview.

He let off steam with his new one.

He became famous with "Underground Railroad" from 2016, for this novel and for "Nickel Boys" from 2019 he received the Pulitzer Prize.

Andrea Diener

Editor in the features section.

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Fridtjof Küchemann

Editor in the features section.

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One tells a story of the escape from slavery and before persecution, as if the Underground Railroad, the secret network of escape workers in America in the first half of the 19th century, actually consisted of rails. The second tells of torture and mistreatment in a reformatory for black youth in the 1960s - based on true stories that only became known less than ten years ago when the remains of cruelly beaten youth were found buried on a former prison site in Florida.

And now - a crook, as he himself calls his new work?

Much more!

We talk to our colleague Florian Balke about "Harlem Shuffle", as the book is called, and about its author.

Then Antje Rávik Strubel, who is on the longlist for the German Book Prize with her new novel "Blaue Frau", answers our three questions about writing and reading.

"Harlem Shuffle" by Colson Whitehead has just been published by Hanser, was translated by Nikolaus Stingl, has 384 pages and costs 25 euros.

Antje Rávik Strubel's novel “Blaue Frau” was published by S. Fischer, has 432 pages and costs 24 euros.

Every Sunday morning, the FAZ books podcast alternates between conversations about books and topics, interviews with authors, readings, literary puzzles and recitations from the Frankfurt anthology.

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