BY Harsimran Kaur  ON July 13, 2021, IN BOOK REVIEWS, TYLL

Tyll – An endearing, free-spirited and magnanimously skilled tight-rope walker takes you to a journey of mystical revelations, an arduous struggle with captivity and an unrelenting hope to live. Daniel Kehlmann brings forth a story of a boy, “Tyll” who juggles every spectre of his life by first knotting it tightly in the fist and then letting it go unceremoniously to give way to the unenforceable. 

“Tyll, Tyll, Tyll,” the shrieking bellow sound by the audience applauds him for manoeuvring his body unobtrusively to form perfect stances to give an impeccable narration. Tyll is in all of us! Are we all not trying to escape the intolerance and ambiguity around us and find shelter in the comprehendible? Tyll’s journey crossing thirty years of war reflects his endurance, the indefatigable spirit and the never die attitude.

The book introduces varied characters, each one with the foreboding of the unknown. Tyll belongs to them, dissecting his own path. He walks with them but does not let go off his own presumptions and discretions. From escaping shadow of his father’s occult proclivities to learning the art of juggling balls and deceiving, he goes on to become a subservient worker at the abode of the Winter king and queen. What follows in the backdrop of the war makes Tyll vulnerable and indispensible.

He dances to impress—the bewildering shout of ‘Tyll, Tyll,’ creates an infallible magic, talks with an irk of humour, runs as if a fusillades of shots suspended in one go, is humane to let the present perish for a better future and earns a sobriquet of ‘fool’ by the Winter Queen.


Tyll embarks on a journey of knowledge, tricks, nuances of war, defying the ordinary and conquering the imperils. A book of magnificent interest, arched in the backdrop of a plagued war, brings to its readers a spell imperceptibility broken chapter by chapter.    

Rating: 5.00/5. From 1 vote.
Please wait…
0 0 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments