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It’s Switzerland in the 1920s when the two lovers first meet. She is young, beautiful, and rich. In contrast, he can barely support himself and is interested only in music. By the end of their lives, he is a famous conductor and the richest man in the country, but she is penniless. And most important of all, no one knows of her love for him; it is a secret he took to his grave. Here begins Urs Widmer’s novel My Mother’s Lover. Based on a real-life affair, My Mother’s Lover is the story of a lifelong and unspoken love for a man—recorded by the woman’s son, who begins this novel on the day his mother’s lover dies. Set against the backdrop of the Depression and World War II, it is a story of sacrifice and betrayal, passionate devotion, and inevitable suffering. Yet in Widmer’s hands, it is always entertaining and surprisingly comic—a unique kind of fairy tale.
About the Author
Urs Widmer (1938–2014) was a Swiss novelist, playwright, essayist, and short story writer and the cofounder of Verlag der Autoren, an author-owned publishing house focusing on texts related to the performing arts. His other books include The Blue Soda Siphon and My Father’s Book, also published by Seagull Books.
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