Erich Kästner was born in Dresden in 1899, and died in Munich in 1974. He was not only one of the world’s most famous children’s authors, but was also master of many genres of writing, as a novelist, poet, cabaret artist, dramatist and feature writer. Emil and the Detectives, which he wrote in 1929, was a worldwide bestseller. Kästner’s own life story was closely linked to the social conditions of his time, which he observed with an ever clear and watchful eye. During the Nazi regime his books were banned, but later his life’s work was recognized by the award of the International Youth Prize and the Hans Christian Andersen Medal, among others.
“Kästner is a master of suspense. There is probably no-one since who has succeeded with such an equal measure of criticism and understanding in opening the eyes of children to the present in which they are living.”
Austrian Broadcasting Corporation