"I am a camera with its shutter open, quite passive, recording, not thinking," are the famous lines on the first page. This a semiautobiographical account of Isherwood's time in 1930s Berlin. Written as a connected series of six short stories the book, first published in 1939, is a brilliant evocation of the decadence and repression, glamour and sleaze of Berlin society. Isherwood shows the lives of people at threat from the rise of the Nazis: Natalia Laundauer, the rich, Jewish heiress, Peter and Otto, a gay couple andthe "divinely decadent" Sally Bowles, a young English woman who was so memorably portrayed by Liza Minnelli.
Christopher Isherwood will be a name on everyone's lips with the release of Tom Ford's film adaptation of A Single Man. 20040624