“Billiards at half past nine” summary

“Billiards at half past nine” summary

“Billiards at half-past nine” - a novel by Heinrich Böll, published in 1959.

Formally, the novel takes place within one day - September 6, 1958, however, using the memories of the heroes, the narrative captures the events of the past years. In the center is the story of the Femel family from the end of the 19th century until 1958. It reflects Böll's disgust for the Nazi period, as well as for war in general.

The Femel family includes three generations of architects: Heinrich Femel, his son Robert Femel, and Joseph, the son of Robert.

Leonora, secretary of Robert Femel, describes Robert, as well as the petty joys of his ordinary everyday life. Robert is meticulous in everything he does. Robert’s old friend arrives at the office, but Leonora sends him to the Prince Henry Hotel, where Robert spends every day from half past nine to eleven. The man searching for Femel was called Nettlinger. Having arrived at the hotel, he demands to take him to Robert, who played in the billiard room. However, the hotel employee Jochen, who was at that moment at the front desk clerk, does not allow this, guided by Femel's desire.

Upstairs, in the billiard room, Robert tells Hugo, about the fight from the hotel, about his life, and the reader finds out that Nettlinger was one of the policemen. Robert and his friend Srell, who were classmates with Nettlinger, were opposed to the Nazis, they were not going to take the "communion of the buffalo." Srell disappears after being beaten by Nettlinger and gym teacher Ben Wex, also a policeman. Nettlinger and Wex not only beat Srell and Robert, but also corrupted his brother, Otto, who died in a battle near Kiev in 1942. His mother, Johannes Kilb, was admitted to a mental hospital, she was declared insane to protect her from police harassment. Today, Henry is 80 years old. Heinrich and Robert meet in a bar after visiting Johann in a hospital, sitting and talking for the first time in many years. Srell, meanwhile, returned to Germany.

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