Vuursteens vleugels (novel, 2009) The introverted piano tuner Erik Vuursteen is fully aware that his mission is doomed to fail: absolute purity of pitch is unattainable. He prefers to tend to his clients’ instruments when they themselves are not present, allowing him the opportunity to photograph their home and their possessions at his leisure, and thus indulge in his voyeurism.
He is caught during one of these ritual photo sessions by Pluis, a young woman. They both keep the incident to themselves, but Vuursteen cannot forget the encounter. When he discovers by accident that she works in a sex club, he makes advances to her. And so a bond develops, piano piano, between the piano tuner and the young girl.
Their acquaintance sets a stream of events into motion, which will eventually lead to Vuursteen’s demise. Vuursteens vogels is a compelling novel of solitude and purity, of music and love.
About Vuursteens Vleugels:
‘…from the very first paragraph you are fascinated by the introverted, reclusive piano tuner.’
‘Vuursteen drags you with him in the whirlpool of his deranged thoughts, and when he concludes: ‘in the end we all land at the wrong place at the wrong time’, you know for certain that this will soon be happening to him.’
(Edith Koenders in De Volkskrant)
‘This is the kind of novel you want to keep for yourself, that you’re the only one who knows this wonderful novel (and has even read twice).’
‘Pluis’s version of the romance – and it was indeed a romance, no matter how much Vuursteen avoided such terms – is absolutely moving, a confirmation of the sympathy the petulant piano tuner had already evoked in the reader. So Vuursteens vogels is first and foremost sympathetic, and only in the second place clever and for the most part successful – even though it’s not entirely in tune, it certainly is beautiful.’
‘…a rock-solid novel.’
(Erik Fokke in Pianowereld)
Four men, four stories. Or is there just one? In Vic, met name the reader is swept along a non-stop expedition in search of Vic: bit player, journalist, adventurer and a slightly shady middleman. The last sign of life from Vic is a postcard from Spain. Via childhood friends and a dubious trading house, the trail leads to a mysterious collection of newspaper photos. Vic's life, according to the testimony of vagrants, appears to have taken a dramatic turn in New York. Vic, met name is about great expectations, missed opportunities and an abundance of possibilities. How many choices can a man make? And how many lives does it take to erase yourself from the consciousness of others? Vic is a man of many faces, each belonging to one of many unsettling histories.
Cyrille Offermans in de Standaard:
' Vic, met name is Schönberger's literary debut, but the book shows none of the trademarks of a debut novel. (...) The book has the same decisive, Stravinskian eloquence that typified his diverse earlier works; at the same time it is clear that it addresses the problem of the disunity of multifaceted talent, something the author himself certainly knows from personal experience.'