Lena is a married, chronically infidelitous Berlin-based European writer, devoted only to gratifying her ambitions and hard-driving libido. Nathan is a footloose womanizing American author, unable to produce the big novel for which he’s been contracted. When both writers meet in the Alps, they fall into a mad kind of addictive love, chasing each other selfishly, sexually and even digitally across Europe and America, turning their affair into a high-stakes reckless game of jealousy, rivalling ambitions, gender conflict, political combat and artistic outrage. But beneath it all, their hearts are breaking, dark secrets haunt their pasts, while overshadowing their love is a fast-changing, ruthless world in which not only is The Holocaust denied or forgotten but across the social and political spectrum a new kind of totalitarianism -- spearheaded by a new breed of “strongmen” leaders -- threatens to sweep Lena, Nathan, and all of humanity, to the very brink of annihilation. Fast-paced, written in contagious gonzo style, and with leading characters whose wild bohemian lives make for binge-worthy compulsive reading, The Berlin Woman is a new kind of no-holds barred love story written by Alan Kaufman, an author known for his storytelling power and who’s been not only praised by everyone from Dave Eggers, Etgar Keret and Sapphire to David Mamet, Hubert Selby Jr. and Thane Rosenbaum but has been compared by critics to such prose masters as Henry Miller, I.B. Singer and Jack Kerouac.
Poet, editor, writer, and painter Alan Kaufman was born and raised in the Bronx, earning a BA at City College of New York. In 1977 he moved to Israel, where he served in the Israel Defense Forces. After studying fiction in the MFA program at Columbia University, he relocated to San Francisco, where he helped build the community of performance poets at Cafe Babar and participated in the 1993 San Francisco Poets Strike. In addition to his involvement with the Spoken Word community, Kaufman has also been a central figure in the Jewish countercultural movement, co-editing It's the Jews! A Celebration of New Jewish Visions (1995, with Danny Shot) and editing the magazine Davka: Jewish Cultural Revolution. Influenced by Walt Whitman and Charles Bukowski, Kaufman writes free verse and spoken word poems that often engage themes of spirituality, identity, and cultural memory. He is the author of the poetry collection Who Are We? (1998), the novel Matches (2005) and the memoir Jew Boy (2000). His reviews appear widely in journals such as the San Francisco Chronicle, the Los Angeles Times, and the Partisan Review. Kaufman is also the editor of The Outlaw Bible of American Poetry (1999, co-edited with S.A. Griffin) and The Outlaw Bible of American Literature (2004, co-edited with Barney Rosset and Neil Ortenberg). His own work has been included in the anthologies ALOUD: Voices from the Nuyorican Poets Cafe (1994, edited by Muguel Algarin, Bob Holman, and Nicole Blackman) and Nothing Makes You Free: Writings from Descendants of Holocaust Survivors (1993, edited by Melvin Jules Bukiet). A resident of San Francisco, Kaufman holds American, French, and Israeli citizenship. A selection of his papers are held at the library of the University of Delaware.
The Berlin Woman