'A Guide to Berlin” is the name of a short story written by Vladimir Nabokov in 1925, when he was a young man of 26, living in Berlin.
'A group of six international travellers, two Italians, two Japanese, an American and an Australian, meet in empty apartments in Berlin to share stories and memories. Each is enthralled in some way to the work of Vladimir Nabokov, and each is finding their way in deep winter in a haunted city. A moment of devastating violence shatters the group, and changes the direction of everyone's story.
'Brave and brilliant, A Guide to Berlin traces the strength and fragility of our connections through biographies and secrets. ' (Publication summary)
'“The past is a foreign country,” as L. P. Hartley once famously wrote, and Gail Jones’s novel A Guide to Berlin suggests that Hartley’s famous dictum can also be inverted: that we see foreign countries mainly through the prism of the past and that to travel to another country is thus to immerse oneself in history. Certainly, the lonely expatriates who make up Jones’s cast seem more at home in the past than in the present.' (Introduction)