Writes solo and as part of a writing duo with his brother Daan.
Thomas Heerma van Voss studied English in London and Dutch in Amsterdam. In 2009 he debuted with De allestafel [The Everything Table]. In 2013 this was followed by the much-praised Stern, after which Heerma van Voss was proclaimed one of the greatest literary talents in the Netherlands. In the collection of short stories De derde persoon [The Third Person] (2014) he shows how man has little power over the way in which life passes. His characters may want to change, but cannot. In 2015 he published Ultimatum, a thriller which Heerma van Voss wrote with his brother Daan. Heerma van Voss has published stories, interviews and articles in various newspapers and magazines. The German translation of Stern is to be published in August 2016. Ultimatum is also to be translated into German.
Schöffling & Co Verlag, 2016
Translated by Ulrich Faure
Original title: Stern (Thomas Rap, 2013)
Hugo Stern has never succeeded in bonding with other people. An only child, he grew up alone with his mother. In one telling episode, when he is a student in London he befriends a Korean who never ever says anything – they go to the movies together and stare at the screen. Back in the Netherlands, Stern marries. He and his wife have a baby who dies soon after birth and they adopt a Korean child, giving him the same forename as their own. The story reaches a climax when the son, who has turned eighteen, wants to visit his native country. Stern is torn by separation anxiety, the memory of his friend in London who never answered his letters and his inability to press his child to his chest, all of which culminates in a heart-rending final scene at the airport.
This writer has a great deal to offer.
'Stern' is a faultlessly written novel. Impressive. We’re eagerly looking forward to the future of this young writer. Thomas Heerma van Voss: remember that name boys and girls.
'Stern' is a disquieting novel. The power of this writer lies in his control, timing, and adult themes.