Jan Cremer / Jan Cremer – Odyssey. Wanderlust

Jan Cremer – Odyssey. Wanderlust

Jan Cremer – Odyssey. Wanderlust

Read our sample translation of Odyssey. Wanderlust

About the book

For half a century Jan Cremer tries to find out about his real family background. It has always been concealed from him. He knew he had a father who was caught in a web of Wanderlust, a longing for far-off places, a feeling that led him further and further from house and home and in 1937 took him to Budapest, where he met the self-willed ballerina Rozsá Csordás Szomerkay, nineteen at the time, who became Jan Cremer’s. It is not until 2011, on finding documents that she left, that Cremer gets to know more about his origins. In a subdued style he investigates the origins of his parents’ turbulent life and its tragic outcome. Odyssey is a fascinating book, one that throws a bright and merciless light on the Netherlands of before, during and after the Second World War.

Press on Press on I, Jan Cremer:

This lad on his motorbike stands for freedom as against lethargy, honesty as against hypocrisy, bravura as against respectability. He stands, in short, for Holland against the Netherlands. - NRC HANDELSBLAD

In 1964 I, Jan Cremer caused huge controversy. Partly as a result of publicity stunts by the author himself, it was a long time before the dust settled. By then the book had exposed a generation gap in many families. - NPO


Jan Cremer (b. 1940), artist and writer, achieved international fame in 1964 with his first novel, I, Jan Cremer. At the author’s request, ‘a sure-fire bestseller’ was printed on the cover, right from the very first edition. Cremer’s controversial comments in I, Jan Cremer were viewed by some as a threat to national security, a bad example to young people and so on. At the same time, he was praised by such prominent colleagues as Willem Frederik Hermans. The sequel was published in 1966 and also became a smash hit. His subsequent work has included travelogues, letters and an autobiographical account.

© Ben Kleyn

Additional book information

  • memoir
  • ISBN 9789023499824
  • Number of pages: 288
  • World rights: De Bezige Bij
  • Price: € 19,99
  • English sample available