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Dance by the Canal

by Kerstin Hensel

If it were possible to be a 'poor little rich girl' in a communist society then Gabriela, the daughter of a famous East German surgeon, is just that. She is an intelligent child but prone to making the wrong decisions which lead eventually to her living on the streets of Liebnitz. Can two momentous events, the publication of her writing and the fall of the Berlin Wall, turn Gabriela's life around? A enjoyable read in a single sitting.

Extract

No one knows my name any more, no one knows what I've done, who I was, who I am. What a stroke of luck. I have to admit that I'd see these things differently if I hadn't been chosen to write. I would doss, drink and stink. But I don't stink. I'm clean. I wash every day in the water fountain in Schiller Park, early in the morning when the gate's still closed. Then I eat breakfast at the shelter. Or I wash at the shelter and have breakfast in the park
- Everything's fine, I say. But it's only fine because I can write.
Translated by Jen Calleja

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