the short story project

Prenzlauer Berg by Night (Nothing Doing)

Katy Derbyshire On:

Prenzlauer Berg by Night (Nothing Doing) by Annett Gröschner

Many stories about gentrification in Berlin have been written, and especially in Prenzlauer Berg. Yet Gröschner gives us a very special take – her narrator feels like part of an endangered species, like the fox she meets on the now empty streets at night. While she’s wary of the invaders, she’s aware that they’re only human too, and for want of an alternative she starts to fraternize with them and study their habits and habitats. Annett Gröschner knows and loves Berlin. She knows the locals in her neighborhood and the history of the streets and houses. She knows the tiny details, the leftover artifacts she describes in her story. And she captures the atmosphere of Prenzlauer Berg by night, then and now, so well that you can very nearly smell it. Join her as she peels back the layers in this arch, funny-sad short story.