Benjamin, studying to be a doctor, is doing a residency on a cancer ward. The last person he expects to bump into at the hospital is his childhood love, Ambros; but as it turns out, Ambros is being treated for metastatic cancer. As everyday life at the hospital takes its course, the two men grow cautiously closer again. Both of them are aware that these moments – among determined nurses and wheezing neighbours, jovial consultants and obstinate emergency cases – are the few they have left …
David Fuchs, himself an oncologist, tells the story of these young men without any sentimentality, but with a fine instinct for the quirks of human interaction – making the book all the more moving. He effortlessly captures the beauty and lightness of life in the face of departure.
“Impressive and also very moving – a few really very powerful little anecdotes and images that are condensed and transformed into a huge story of life and love.”
Jury statement from FM4-Wortlaut 2016, which David Fuchs won with an extract from his novel
David Fuchs is an author as well as a doctor. He works in Linz as an oncologist and palliative carer, where he was born in 1981. As an author he graduated from the Leonding Academy of Literature, and writes whenever he has time (and when his two children permit). He drew on his professional experiences for his novel Before We Disappear, without ever being clinical or exploitative. An extract from the novel won the FM4-Wortlaut 2016.