Biography

I’m not a writer … I just write.

Christoph Simon

Christoph Simon was born in 1972 in Emmental, Switzerland. After travels through the Middle East, Poland, South America, London and New York, he settled in Bern. His first novel, Franz, or Why Antelopes Run in Herds (2001) has sold over 10,000 copies, while Planet Obrist (2005) was nominated for the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize. Zbinden’s Progress is his fourth novel and won the 2010 Bern Literature Prize.

More Info

  • Read more about Zbinden’s Progress in the book section.
  • Zbinden’s Progress featured in World Literature Today’s ‘Notable Translations 2012’ list. As well as in the London Review of Books’ ‘Winter Selection 2012’ and Booktrust’s ‘Books We Like: January 2013’.
  • Our publisher Stefan Tobler has this to say about it: ‘At every page I realised the corners of my mouth were turning up involuntarily as I read. Full of glorious humour and lines I had to write down, it also tells us that another world is possible in our streets and with our families. I hope it gives you the lift it gave me!’
  • Zbinden’s Progress was one of the books discussed in the German-language Reading Group in Spring 2011. Readers loved its charm and emotional pull. Its original title is Spaziergänger Zbinden.

Reviews

Alexander Starritt
Times Literary Supplement

‘Zbinden invites comparison with Leo Tolstoy’s Ivan Ilych.’

Ian Sansom
The Guardian

‘With its slow pace and winning ways, Zbinden’s Progress casually sidles up and takes its place alongside a number of remarkable recent works [on] the art of taking a walk.’

Lucy Popescu
The Independent

‘A tender, restrained celebration of life’s simple pleasures, beautifully translated by Donal McLaughlin.’

Benjamin Morris
The Berlin Review of Books

Zbinden’s Progress is a delight: a warm, wise, and compassionate book, as attuned to the complexities and mysteries of life as it is to the simple, pleasing colours of its beloved walking-frames.'


Publishers Weekly

'The first-person narrative is pitch-perfect, capturing a slight formality indicative of Zbinden’s age and personality, as well as his natural yarn-spinner’s charm and desire to please.'

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