An international bestselling novel- a year in the life of an elderly man writing an expose from an old-people's home in Amsterdam.
Hendrik Groen (Author) started his diary on the literary website of Torpedo magazine. He says about his novel- 'There's not one sentence that's a lie, but not every word is true.' The Secret Diary of Hendrik Groen, 83 1/4 Years Old has been translated into over thirty languages.Hester Velmans (Translator) is the author of two popular children's novels and a translator specializing in modern fiction. Her translation of Renate Dorrestein's A Heart of Stone won the Vondel Prize for Translation and was a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection. Her translation of Lulu Wang's The Lily Theater was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. Her children's book Isabel of the Whales now has a sibling- the second in the Whales Series, Jessaloup's Song (age 10 and up).
'A great deal of heart' Graeme Simsion 'Praised for its wit'
BBC Radio 4 Front Row 'When I'm an old man, I want to be
Hendrik Groen' John Boyne 'I laughed until I cried' David
Suchet 'Thoughtful, anxious and gruff... Laced with humour'
Mail on Sunday 'Amusing [and] wickedly accurate' Sunday Express * -
A story with a great deal of heart, it pulled me in with its self-deprecating humour, finely drawn characters and important themes. Anyone who hopes to grow old with dignity will have much to reflect on -- Graeme Simsion, author of international phenomenon * The Rosie Project *
Thoughtful, anxious and gruff... Laced with humour -- The Best New Fiction * Mail on Sunday *
Full of off-beat charm and quirky characters -- Cathy Rentzenbrink * Stylist *
A joy to read, as much concerned with friendship and dignity as it is with the debilitating effects of aging ... An entertaining and uplifting story of a man in the winter of his days, stoic in the face of bureaucratic nonsense and an unabashed need to wear a nappy. Imagined or not, this is the diary of someone who wants nothing more than to be allowed see out his days with dignity and respect. It's not too much to ask, really, is it? -- John Boyne * Irish Independent *
Amusing [and] wickedly accurate ... I was constantly put in mind of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, another comi-tragedy concerning the tyranny of institutions of the unwanted. Enjoy Groen's light touch but do not be fooled by it. We live in an ageing society. The Secret Diary of Hendrik Groen is a handbook of resistance for our time. ***** FIVE STARS * Daily Express *
Hendrik Groen is king -- Ray Kluun
Highly entertaining ... a delightful and touching saga of one man's way of coping with old age ... we may assume that Hendrik Groen is a character of fiction. But it is a fiction so closely based on the observation of real life that it is utterly convincing * Daily Express *
Hendrik pens an expose of his care home, sets up the Old-But-Not-Dead club and relishes the arrival of a new female resident. This geriatric Adrian Mole made me laugh and think. Terrific -- Fanny Blake * Woman and Home *