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Biography's Source: From the publisher
Theodor Fontane (1819-1898), of French descent and brought up on the Prussian Baltic coast, spent much of his life as a journalist. He was for several years a foreign correspondent in London, and subsequently chronicled the life and history of Berlin’s hinterland and Bismarck’s wars. The first of his seventeen works of fiction, Before the Storm, was published when he was fifty-nine. His international reputation rose steadily throughout the twentieth century. Supreme in dialogue, his best work an elegant and engaging blend of irony, penetration and compassion, he is now seen as one of the finest of German novelists.