A novel published recently to some acclaim, but so far missing the wider attention it deserves. An elegiac work narrated, in the late-1970s, by a naïve young girl hired as an interpreter on the Greek island set of a film being made by the great veteran director Billy Wilder. The ageing film-maker, one of a generation of talented Jewish artists who fled Nazi-dominated Europe, has for years been struggling to express his experience through the surreally mismatching vehicle of escapist Hollywood movies. An insightful and moving story about how memories can or cannot be passed down through the generations; how much an individual’s past can or cannot be left behind.
Summer 1977. The young Calista leaves Athens and sets off on an adventure which will lead her to a Greek island that has been turned into a film set. Here, she will start working for famed Hollywood director Billy Wilder, following him to Germany on a journey into his own past and family history.