Longest Night MMP.jpg

Otto de Kat

Translated from the Dutch by Laura Watkinson

Paperback - B-format - 240pp - 19/04/2018 - £8.99 - 978 0 85705 609 2


Since the liberation of the Netherlands, Emma Verweij has been living in Rotterdam, in a street which became a stronghold of friendships for its inhabitants during the Second World War. She marries Bruno, they have two sons, and she determines to block out the years she spent in Nazi Berlin during the war, with her first husband Carl.

But now, ninety-six years old and on the eve of her death, long- forgotten memories crowd again into her consciousness, flashbacks of happier years, and the tragedy of the war, of Carl, of her father, and of the friends she has lost.

In The Longest Night, his impressive, reflective new novel after News from Berlin, Otto de Kat deftly distills momentous events of 20th-century history into the lives of his characters. In Emma, the past and the present coincide in limpid fragments of rare, melancholy beauty.


A masterpiece of literary craft and concision; sparse, beautiful and hugely affecting
— John Harding, Daily Mail
De Kat mixes great moral issues with historical events. This is his literary art. The Longest Night is melancholic and brilliantly written
— Marianne Mielke, Radio Berlin
Otto de Kat has created a small masterpiece
— Nürnberger Zeitung
The De Kat Express takes you on a journey without borders
— NRC Handelsblad
These are novels of subtle emotional distance . . . as physical as a blow to the heart
— Eileen Battersby, Irish Times
One of the Netherlands’ most compelling literary voices
— Irish Examiner