The twins Niklas and Viktor grow up with their mother in the Austrian province. There, it is nature that captivates them, and just as the village and the books are only products of the wood from the nearby forest, the people seem to be mere products, of the weather, of the forest, of mining.
Quite soon Nik and Vik realize that they are indistinguishable from one another, and they take advantage of this fact on several occasions: whether at school, during their studies in Vienna, or in their dealings with women. On their adventures through Vienna they are accompanied by Marlene and Elena, two young female artists. One is an aspriring writer who studied at the renowned writing school in Hildesheim, the other a painter and performance artist – for both, the twins are models and templates for their work on human nature.
The world of this novel is located between Austria and Germany, between the provinces and Vienna, Berlin and Hildesheim. It is populated, for example, by Catholic tailors who are raised by the order of the Sisters of the Cross and whom the Mafia is on the lookout for, and by drawing teachers with a fondness for the figure of the dragon. Leander Fischer’s prose is the radical antithesis of contemporary literature. The artful language takes off anew with each chapter, gifting the reader with an immense wealth of detail and stylistic power.