69 Hotelzimmer (“60 hotel rooms”) is the posthumous literary debut of one of the most renowned documentary filmmakers of our time. [Die Andere Bibliothek] Michael Glawogger’s novel was chosen by Stiftung Buchkunst as one of the most beautiful German books 2015, and was awarded with the grand prize worth 10,000 euro. The jury was especially pleased by the economical and surprising means that were used to shape the imageless content at the story openings: Typeface and position of the chapter numbers are reminiscent of engraved labels. The page is the room door. The first lines of text shimmer in orange and gradually darken to the bottom into a reading black.
“Why exactly 69 stories?” she asked. “It’s a beautiful number,” he said. “In confusion comedies, 69 often becomes 66 or 99 when the slamming of the door makes a numeral rotate — or even 96, if both rotate.” And of course: Just as the number 13 is often omitted in hotels, the 13th story remains untold.