Book look: Sargnagel & Semmelweis

Eating ice cream and watching dinner dating reality shows all day is what Stefanie Sargnagel loves doing the most. She also enjoys long walks through her hometown and getting drunk in tiny pubs located in her “ghetto” with unemployed white trash alcoholics. At the same time, the young Viennese author – who keeps underlining how terrible it feels getting old – is considered being one of Austria’s most promising writers.

Her books “In der Zukunft sind wir alle tot” and “Fitness” feature Facebook diary entries and short but brilliant remarks about living in Vienna’s fifth district. Sargnagel does not give a damn about our society’s beauty hype. The Instagram star precisely describes her nightlife experiences – at least the parts she can remember the next morning.

Sargnagel is not shying away from expressing depressive feelings and uncertainties. These parts of her book are oppressive but as important as her hilarious reports from the State Opera Ball (“the most boring night of my life”) and the night she attended a music event organised by the right-wing Freedom Party. Sargnagel makes fun of the domestic art scene, sophisticated fellow authors – and herself. She documents a visit to a Czech casino and various occurrences happening in the city’s infamous tram number six. This is pop poetry perfection.

By Stefanie Sargnagel
Published by redelsteiner dahimene edition (

In der Zukunft sind wir alle tot
By Stefanie Sargnagel
Published by Mikrotext (

A Vienna University lecturer has presented her comprehensive investigation on Ignaz Semmelweis. The hygiene pioneer’s achievements cannot be appreciated enough. He fought for basic standards and regulations which are common sense today.

Anna Durnova portrays the medic’s remarkable mission. Her new 250-page book “In den Händen der Ärzte. Ignaz Semmelweis. Pionier der Hygiene” reveals insights on the manifold obstacles Semmelweis was confronted with throughout his career.

“In den Händen der Ärzte. Ignaz Semmelweis. Pionier der Hygiene” underlines the high-quality policy of Residenz Verlag. The publishing house recently also presented “Drum prüfe, wer sich ewig bindet. Eine kleine Geschichte der Ehe”, a scientific analysis on marriage from the Roman Empire to the 21st century. On 220 pages, author Alexandra Bleyer documents changes concerning the role of women in different countries and decades.

Helmut Wohnout meanwhile wrote about late Austrian chancellor Leopold Figl and the remarkable developments in the country after World War Two. Figl masterminded the foundation of the Austrian People’s Party, ÖVP. The former concentration camp inmate also played an important role concerning various issues – from food supply in the seriously demolished Vienna region to the creation of a modern federal constitution and the State Treaty agreement of 1955.

In den Händen der Ärzte. Ignaz Semmelweis. Pionier der Hygiene
By Anna Durnova
Published by Residenz Verlag (

Book look: Prussia & Bavaria

A new edition of the renowned series of history books by Der Spiegel and DVA portrays the Prussian Empire. “Das Kaiserreich. Deutschland unter preußischer Herrschaft” informs about the most influential politicians and military chiefs. More than 20 authors contributed articles regarding industrialisation, cultural developments and the effects of the state’s rapid population growth. Other topics of the book are the establishment of Siemens, cholera in 1892 and the rise of Deutsche Bank. Historian John C. G. Röhl, Der Spiegel Berlin office reporter Michael Sontheimer, science journalist Nils Klawitter and many more offer astonishing insights.

Das Kaiserreich. Deutschland unter preußischer Herrschaft
By Uwe Klußmann, Joachim Moor and others
Published by DVA (

A German publishing house has presented a spectacular 730-page tome focusing on the achievements and controversies sparked by one of the country’s most controversial conservative lawmakers. Horst Möller documents all aspects of the remarkable career of Franz Joseph Strauß – from youth experiences and World War Two duty to his feud with Der Spiegel editor Rudolf Augstein. The historian – who lectured at several universities including institutions in Paris and Oxford – writes about the late Bavarian Minister President’s difficult relationship with former CDU leader and Chancellor Helmut Kohl. Strauß was a rhetoric giant who did not shy away from lashing out at his opponents. His attacking style never faded. The late CSU head’s era was also shaped by various conflicts and accusations concerning financial issues and a fighter jet deal. “Franz Joseph Strauß. Herrscher und Rebell” is a brilliant and intense portrait of a political heavyweight of the 20th century.

Franz Joseph Strauß. Herrscher und Rebell
By Horst Möller
Published by Piper (

Book look: Hänke & Honetschläger

There are various cultural differences between Western Europe and China. We are all aware of the significant gap regarding eating traditions and family relationships. “Nackte Hochzeit. Wie ich China lieben lernte” is one of the funniest records concerning these issues. Sven Hänke earned a position at a university in China by accident. He soon realised that people’s routines are totally different there. Hänke, who grew up near Hamburg and lived in Berlin, describes his mobile phone purchase odyssey. Another chapter reveals his aversion for jellyfish salad and sole. “Nackte Hochzeit. Wie ich China lieben lernte” features hilarious anecdotes about China’s passion for German precision and technology. Since he fell in love in Tianjin, Hänke describes the extraordinary wedding preparations and complex procedures before the couple eventually ties the knot. A few months later, he chauffeured his wife’s relatives through Europe – speed sightseeing in Berlin, Amsterdam and Paris. “Nackte Hochzeit. Wie ich China lieben lernte” is a witty and highly informative 250-page approach towards Chinese customs and mentality.

Nackte Hochzeit. Wie ich China lieben lernte
By Sven Hänke
Published by Rowohlt (

An internationally renowned artist from Austria has created a collection of Polaroids taken in the capital of Brazil. Edgar Honetschläger – a celebrated multimedia artist residing in Austria and Italy – travelled to Brasilia to capture the city’s specific architectural aspects as well as moments of loneliness. Brasilia is known for its futuristic buildings. Honetschläger’s blurred shots convey a special mood far from the colourful Olympic atmosphere of Rio de Janeiro. “Sugar and Ice” is just one of many acclaimed Honetschläger projects. Born in Linz, the artist and filmmaker (“Milk”, “Aun”) participated in the 1997 Documenta Kassel. A few months ago, Austrian radio Ö1 dedicated its two-hour culture programme “Diagonal” to Honetschläger.

Sugar and Ice
By Edgar Honetschläger
Published by Schlebrügge.Editor (

Book look: Boltz & Gölsdorf, Berlin & Grünlich

Comedy author Tim Boltz and former ZDF and n-tv presenter Jule Gölsdorf have teamed up to investigate the many aspects of what is still seen as a taboo topic: having a pee. Boltz (“Nasenduscher”, “Oh Pannenbaum”) and the ex-“logo!” presenter write about medical aspects but also amusing details. They offer lots of information in a very entertaining way. Apart from explaining the various processes happening in the human body, the duo also takes a closer look at routines, habits and traditions as far as going to the toilet is regarded. Boltz and Gölsdorf write about the most outrageous celebrity peeing scandals and examine the content of public loo graffiti. Do men have to sit down? What about drinking urine – healthy or silly? Read “Harn aber herzlich. Alles über ein dringendes Bedürfnis” to find out!

Harn aber herzlich. Alles über ein dringendes Bedürfnis
By Tim Boltz & Jule Gölsdorf
Published by Piper (

What happens after somebody has farted? How do we react if the boss tells a bad joke? What is the main part of our preparations before going on holiday? In “Was wir tun, wenn der Chef reinkommt. Die Welt in überwiegend lustigen Grafiken”, Katja Berlin and Peter Grünlich take a closer look at our routines, habits and day to day activities. Their collection of diagrams is honest, witty and terribly funny. Berlin and Grünlich reveal the characteristics of labour union members and people’s real Sunday sentiments. “Was wir tun, wenn der Chef reinkommt” is a Heyne publication. The firm recently also presented a calendar for Marathon enthusiasts (“Der Achilles Laufkalender 2016”) packed with amusing running anecdotes and training tips – and Thomas Gottschalk’s acclaimed autobiography. In “Herbstblond”, the popular entertainer reflects on his “Wetten, dass…?” era. The 65-year-old hosted the epic Saturday night show 151 times before retiring five years ago. Gottschalk remained an influential member of showbiz in Germany, but had to accept failure as his ARD talk show was a massive flop. His early radio engagements, a quiz partnership with Günther Jauch and various pre-“Wetten, dass…?” were more successful. The book’s titles are named after famous pop songs like “Spirit in the Sky” and “Radio Gaga” since its author is a big fan of bands like the Beatles and Status Quo. “Herbstblond” became an imminent bestseller.

Was wir tun, wenn der Chef reinkommt. Die Welt in überwiegend lustigen Grafiken
By Katja Berlin & Peter Grünlich
Published by Heyne (