“Jim Button and Luke the Engine Driver” is the first novel by the famous children’s fiction and fantasy writer Michael Ende who is most known for his novel “The NeverEnding Story”.
This book came to life on a pretty uncommon way. The author himself says he got the urge to write, sat down and started describing the adventures of Jim Button. He wrote while he had inspiration and when he would run out of it, Ende would put the pen down and wait for new ideas to come. It took him a year to finish it. Ende sent the book to many publishers and got rejected every time because the book was considered to be too long for a children’s novel. In the end, it was accepted by a small publishing house.
The novel was published in 1960 and received the German Young Literature Prize. Ende used the money of the prize to pay his rent. The book became such a hit that the small publishing company didn’t have enough resources to print out the numerous copies people wanted. The novel was nominated for the Hans Christian Andersen award and, next to its sequel “Jim Button and the Wild 13” published in 1962, it was screen adapted, translated into many languages and it made Ende a worldwide famous author.
This book contains many unusual creatures and lands to which the two main characters will travel, change their lives and acquire new experiences. They will discover never seen parts of the world and make friends with unexpected fairytale-like creatures. Their journey is accompanied by many exciting events and unexpected adventures.
On a small island named Morrowland lived Luke, King Alfred the Quarter-to-Twelfth, Mrs. Whaat and Mrs. Sleeve. Wheat has a store where everyone could find everything and Sleeve bought souvenirs from the store. Luke worked as an engine driver and he was grimy, despite his everyday showers. The King was seen only for the holidays because he was too busy. Exactly at quarter to twelve, he would show himself to the window and everyone would shout and throw their hats to the sky. Then Emma, a locomotive, would whistle and everyone would get a vanilla, and during the holidays a strawberry, ice cream. Mrs. Whaat was very good in making ice creams so the King ordered them from her.
The life was peaceful on the island until one day something strange happened. One day a boat stopped at the shore and a mailman came out with a big package. He asked if Mrs. Krintuuth lived there. Everyone was a big shocked because they were sure that the mailman knew everyone on the island. He climbed up on a hill and gave the King the package. The package had an address on it which mentioned the third floor of an Old Street and the number 133 of which no one ever heard about. The paper which had the address on it was a bit smudged so it was also hard to read the address. Everyone was curious so they decided to explore the island. Unfortunately, they couldn’t find Mrs. Krintuuth. The mailman said he would be back in a week and that he will take the package if they do not find Mrs. Krintuuth.
After a long meeting, the King gave his permission to open up the package. There was a little black boy in there. The engine driver Luke was so angry he decided to beat up the person which put a child inside a package. He yelled and the little boy started crying. Mrs. Whaat held him and calmed him down. Luke stood beside her sad for making the child cry.
Everyone accepted the little boy, gave him the name Jim and he became friends with Luke. After a week, Mrs. Whaat went to wait for the mailman. She told him that the package was for her and that everything was alright, even though that was a lie. She was scared that the truth would make the mailman take the child away. As Jim grew up, everything Mrs. Whaat would get mad at him she would wonder about his real mother. She knew that the time to tell the truth, will come, but she was postponing it.
Jim would often ride around in Emma, and sometimes, under Luke’s supervision, he would drive her himself. Jim’s biggest desire was to become an engine driver like Luke. He considered the job would go with his skin tone, but he knew that if he wanted to become an engine driver, he would have to own his locomotive. They were expensive, and it was hard to find them on Morrowland.
Jim’s last name was Button because he always had a hole in his pants, despite Mrs. Whaat patching it up over and over again. In the end, she covered the hole with a button.
Years passed by and Jim grew up to become a little man. If he was in another land, he would already be attending a school but since Morrowland didn’t have one, no one thought the boy should be schooled. Mrs. Whaat measured his growth every month and the King became worried. He asked Luke to come and talk with him. The King told him that Emma has to go because the island was getting too small for all of them. He said that Jim will want to build a house for himself one day and that he will be unable to do it because there were railways everywhere. There were two solutions: either Emma goes or Jim goes.
After finishing his conversation with the King, Luke went to see Emma. He decided to leave with her because they couldn’t stand to be apart. Jim overheard the conversation between Emma and Luke and he found out they were leaving because of him. Luke told Jim they will be leaving that night. Luke was Jim’s best friend and he couldn’t let him just leave so he decided to go with him without saying a word to Mrs. Whaat. Since he didn’t know how to write, he decided to draw her a letter. In the beginning, Luke was against it, but he agreed because he couldn’t say no to his best friend. They agreed on leaving at midnight.
Jim yawned after dinner, said he was tired and that he was going to bed. Jim was a perky boy and Mrs. Whaat didn’t know why he wanted to go to bed so early. When he was already in bed she came to tuck him in, kiss him goodnight, and then she went downstairs to knit a sweater for him. While he was thinking everything over, a wave of sadness came over him and he thought about telling her everything but he knew he couldn’t. Jim got tired and fell asleep.
Jim dreamed of being at the state border and seeing Emma on the sea. He saw Luke waving goodbye to him with a red tissue and yelling: “Why didn’t you come? Goodbye Jim”. Jim saw the locomotive disappear in the dark. He was fighting so hard to wake up that he bounced off of his bed. He was wondering whether he was dreaming or not. All of the sudden he heard the clock strike midnight. Jim jumped out of bed, put on some clothes and tried to escape through the window when he remembered he still had a letter to draw. His hands were shaking, but he managed to make a drawing stating he will be leaving with Luke and Emma and telling Mrs. Whaat not to be sad.
When Jim came to the arranged place, Emma was gone. He ran to the border and saw Emma on the sea. Luke was sitting on it and he was very happy to see Jim because he was already scared that Jim fell asleep. Luke made a ship out of Emma by closing all of the gaps, letting out all of the doors and throwing out all of the coal.
They started sailing. Nothing was heard except for the wind and the waves. They drifted further and further away from Morrowland. A tear rolled down Jim’s face but he courageously wiped it away. Both of them were sad and Luke proposed they turned their back on Morrowland to make the separation easier and to start having fun. The moon was shining that night.
The sea travel was peaceful. The weather was nice and the wind made Emma progress well. Luke and Jim didn’t know where they were headed. When they would get hungry, they would fish a few sea pears or some sea cucumbers from their trees. The trees would grow from the bottom to the surface of the sea. During the day they would tell each other stories, whistle songs, and play games which Jim brought. During the night they would sleep, tucked in the locomotive.
During the third day of the fourth week, their sea trip was over. Jim woke up after feeling a strong kick. Emma wasn’t waving anymore. He looked out the window and saw beautiful surroundings. Never before had he seen something of that kind. He thought he was dreaming so he went back to sleep but after closing his eyes the only thing he saw was darkness. Jim came to the conclusion that he wasn’t dreaming. He saw beautiful trees and flowers of the most unusual shapes but their color was see-through. He saw porcelain bridges and some of them had unusual roofs. Luke, after waking up, couldn’t believe the land they stumbled upon and he too thought he was still sleeping. Luke thought that the beautiful land must be the land Mandala.
Luke’s idea was to go to the capital named Ping and asked the emperor if he maybe needed two engine drivers and a locomotive. They prepared Emma for the journey by transforming her back to a locomotive, better said, making her able to drive on land again. They headed for Ping and avoided the porcelain bridges because they knew that they weren’t strong enough to hold Emma. After some time, they arrived at a stretched road which made their journey easier. Jim was sitting on the roof, taking in the surroundings.
There were many people in the capital, more than Jim ever saw before and he felt a bit uncomfortable. Everyone had almond shaped eyes and big round hats on their heads. The people of Mandala always held hands in order, from the smallest to the biggest member of the family. There were also many houses in the city, and every house had many floors, and every floor had a umbrella-shaped golden roof. There were flags and lanterns on their windows. Emma had to drive carefully and watch out for the people. She whistled and honked non-stop to warn people she was coming through.
They stopped at the palace and Luke and Jim went in. They had to climb up 99 silver stairs. At the top of them, they found 10 m long and 6 m wide doors, made out of expensive ebony. There was a board next to the door which had the words “King of Mandale” written on it and there was a silver bell next to it. Luke rang the doorbell and a big yellow head appeared in front of them explaining that the emperor didn’t have enough time to see them.
They decided to take a walk around town, and they discovered that the people of Mandala were very clean and visited their ear-cleaners often. There were also hair counters which used gold pliers to count each hair. Acrobats and magicians filled the streets with joy and performances. There were also ivory carvers which carved a single piece of ivory their whole life. The people of Mandala had a great respect for them and called them the “big ivory masters”.
Luke and Jim spent the day wandering around. When the night came the people would light up their colorful lanterns. All of the adventures made Jim and Luke forget to eat so they went to a tap house. The problem was they didn’t have any money. Luke thought they could earn money by riding the people around in circles in their locomotive. Even thought the square was filled with people, everyone was too scared to drive around with them. They even ran away when they started Emma up. After coming to the conclusion that their lives would be easier if they knew a citizen of Mandala they noticed a little Mandala running around their feet. He bowed down and said his name was Ping Pong. He heard they were hungry and he decided to treat them. Ping Pong brought a little tray and small pillows for them to sit on. They did it and he kindly asked them what they wanted to eat. Luke and Jim found out that there were many dishes which names didn’t sound appealing so they asked Ping Pong to give them some more suggestions. There was a problem when Ping Pong didn’t know what bread with butter or roasted potatoes were. Since the people of Mandala ate mostly rice, Luke and Jim decided to give it a go. Ping Pong brought many little bowls with colorful rice and two little sticks which were supposed to help them eat. There was green, red and black rice, salty and spicy, and Jim and Luke just ate and ate. They found out Ping Pong had exactly a year and three days, four teeth and that he was very wise.
When the night came, the bells rang and Ping Pong had to go and get his night bottle. After coming back he told Luke and Jim that he was the 32 child of the emperor’s chef and that their dinner was actually for the king who refused it. Luke noticed something written on Mandala on the sticks. It was a poem written by the emperor. Ping Pong took the dishes into the kitchen and he asked them to give him a ride in the locomotive. Luke agreed and they went to the other town square. There they found out that the Emperor agreed to give his daughter hand in marriage to the person who liberates her from the Dragon City. Ping Pong had to go home so they took him to the palace. They agreed to see each other tomorrow and Luke and Jim thought about liberating the princess before going to bed.
When they woke up the next day, there were many people admiring their locomotive. They decided to go and see the Emperor let him know they will attempt to liberate his daughter. The same yellow head waited for them again and refused to let them see the Emperor. After saying they want to liberate the Emperor’s daughter, the head disappeared.
Luke and Jim decided to take care of breakfast. They threw a show on the street. Luke was the strongest man alive, and Jim was a clown. As their first show, they decided to tie iron in a knot and put out a match by spitting. After that Luke whistled a song with Emma. Their show brought them a lot of money.
Everything developed slowly in the offices so the news about two men going to liberate the Emperor’s daughter traveled slowly from the door’s guardian, notaries to the minister. The minister Pi Pa Po was jealous when he heard that the two of them will go to save the princess. He considered that out of all of the people, he deserved to marry the princess, even though he didn’t care about her at all. His envy made him accuse Jim and Luke of being spies. He called the captain of the guard to take them to a dungeon.
Luke and Jim gathered enough money for breakfast. Just when they announced a small break to their viewers, the palace’s doors opened and the guard started coming out. They formed a circle around them and asked them to go into the palace. All of them had big helmets and sables. In the beginning, Luke refused to leave with them because they waited for hours to be invited into the palace. In the end, he backed down and the guards took them to the palace. After entering a big, colorful hallway they were taken to see the minister Pi Pa Po. The minister wasn’t alone. He was with a notary and a few guards. They questioned Luke and Jim. If they refused to answer the questions they wouldn’t be able to see the Emperor. When they found out they were accused of being spies Luke started a fight with the notary and the guards. One of them ended up in the trash can and then the guard decided to take Jim and Luke to see the Emperor. Other guards heard one of them calling for help so they entered the room and started attacking Jim and Luke. Ping Pong saw the scene and went to the Emperor. He kneeled down in front of him and told him what was happening in the palace.
Luke and Jim were in chains when the Emperor appeared and ordered the guards to liberate them and then he placed them in chains. Luke and Jim bowed down to the Emperor and shook his hand. The two friends searched for Ping Pong who fell asleep near a curtain. It was all too much for him, so the Emperor took him into his chambers to get some rest. Ping Pong will be rewarded by the Emperor while the minister will be punished. Everyone in the palace bowed down to Jim and Luke.
There were many books in the Emperor’s library and he placed him a man in charge of finding out what the people of Morrowland liked to eat. The chef himself cooked for them. All of his kids were cooks and all of them were proud of Ping Pong. Both friends enjoyed the food and praised the chef who blushed. After finishing their meal, they went to the terrace with the Emperor where they played some of Jim’s games
Afterward the Emperor gathered all 21 of his best scientist who knew everything about everything. The two friends found out that princess Li Si sent a message with the address of the house she was being held in. A certain Mrs. Grindtooth was holding her captive. She was actually a dragon and she bought the princess from a band of pirates called The Wild 13. Everyone agreed that Jim was actually supposed to fell into the hands of Mrs. Grindtooth but that by mistake he ended up in Morrowland. They decided to save the princess and find out the truth about Jim’s origins. They headed off for their journey the next day.
Jim and Luke woke up the next day before sunrise. The chef brought them some sandwiches and the Emperor gave them a thermos filled with tea. They traveled through a forest filled with glass trees and many different flowers. It took them three days to reach a hill which was mottled with red and white stripes. After some times Luke took out a map trying to figure out where the Twilight Valley. They were supposed to go there. Luke, unlike Jim, knew his way around the map and he found their way. They went a little bit too much to the north and they headed south until they saw a small notch which led them on.
After crossing the Twilight Valley they found themselves in a desert and something was wrong with Emma. After examining her, they found a piece of her engine which was broken. Luke had a spare one but the problem was that the part which was broken was in the center of the locomotive and they had to tear her apart in order to fix her. The night came, and Jim heard some strange notice and then he noticed big black birds with green eyes all around them. He almost screamed in horror. Luke told him they were vultures who do not attack living people.
They worked many hours on Emma and Luke told Jim he can’t unscrew the last screw. Jim decided to do it, despite a scary vulture sitting on top of Emma. He entered and did the job. Luke then replaced the broken part and Emma was finally able to breathe again. The two of them went to sleep.
After waking up and eating their breakfast, they headed on. It was extremely hot in the desert and their only guide was The Crown of The World. They tried to find the Yellow River which leads to the entrance to the Dragon City. Two of them lost their way and found themselves on the seaside surrounded by palm trees. Everything was upside down there.
After driving a bit further they saw the Eiffel Tower, Indian tents and the city of Ping. As it all appeared, it all disappeared. All of the sudden, they saw Morrowland and all of its citizens. Emma headed towards them but she disappeared as well. Jim started crying but he wiped away his tears and continued driving. After seeing their doppelgangers in the desert they knew they were experiencing a mirage. The only solution they had left was waiting for the night so that the mirage wouldn’t fool them again.
They woke up, ate and went on. The sun was setting and it was their new guide. A giant emerged on their horizon. He had a hat made of hay and a long, gray beard. They decided to approach him and then they heard a weak voice telling them he will do them no harm. Jim, scared of the giant, didn’t believe him. The giant was lonely and only wanted to talk to them for a while. As they approached him, they realized he wasn’t really a giant. He was actually smaller than Luke. The giant’s name was Mr. Tur Tur and he was an illusory giant who was avoided by everyone.
He lived in an oasis with a clear lake in the middle. There was also a little white house with a small garden where Tur Tur grew flowers and vegetables. Tur Tur would always get sad when animals would run away from him because he didn’t want to eat them. He was actually a vegetarian. The three of them shared a nice meal and Tur Tur told them his story. As people approached him he became smaller and smaller to the eye but seen from the distance he looked like a giant. He was like that since he was born, so he didn’t have many friends. Tur Tur came to the oasis after losing his parents, the only people who weren’t afraid of him. He was actually hiding in the desert because he didn’t want to scare anyone else. Luke and Jim were the first people not terrified of him.
Mr. Tur Tur knew the desert and in three hours he took them to the north border. They found out where the Dragon City was. It was a huge plateau with five thousand hills which spit fire. Jim and Luke had to go through the Black Rocks where one couldn’t see anything. They had to go straight so they wouldn’t fall into the abyss. The Mouth of Death was at the top, recognizable for their howling.
The friends said goodbye to Tur Tur and continued their journey. The further they traveled, the colder it got. Emma was slowing down, so Luke and Jim had to put a lot of coal inside of her. All of the sudden they stopped, and it was too dark outside to see anything. They had to come up with a plan. The frozen smoke coming out of Emma helped them restart her and they managed to pass the Mouth of Death and found themselves in the sun again. The Land of the Thousand Volcanoes was in front of them. The Earth constantly shivered and there was lava everywhere. Somewhere around there was the Dragon City.
After eating their breakfast, they heard something like crying. It came from an inactive volcano and there they found Nepomuk. He was a half-dragon because his mother was a hippopotamus. Since they helped Nepomuk fix his volcano, he gave him some coal for Emma and even agreed to show them where Dragon City was. They had to disguise Emma into a dragon to get in because, as the name of the city states, it was a city for dragons only.
The next day they found themselves at the entrance into the city. Nepomuk helped them a lot and said goodbye to the at the cave. A guard in the cave scared Jim and Luke. They thought he will see through their disguise but he didn’t so they were able to enter the city. They saw many different kinds of dragons in the city and they all had a choir they did. Luke and Jim noticed that there were no children in the city. It was because dragons couldn’t procreate because they never actually died. They just grew old.
Luke, Jim, and Emma wandered the city unable to find Mrs. Grindtooth’s house. They got lucky and stumbled upon it. Luke was agitated while entering the house with Jim. They left Emma outside, telling her to be extremely quiet. While checking out the rooms in the house, they heard a loud scream. They approached a big door and saw a lot of school supplies. Children of different nationalities were sitting chained to their desks. They noticed princess Li Si because of her long braids. Mrs. Grindtooth heard their whispering and thought someone in the class dared to talk. She got angry at a little boy and hit him because he didn’t know an answer. After that, she started questioning princess Li Si and she knew all of the answers but despite that, she got beat up. Jim, who fancied Li Si from the moment he saw her, decided to save her. Emma entered the room, fought the dragon and won. All of the children cheered. Emma lost her disguise and decided they should run away following the Yellow River. They went to get some sleep, to be ready for their runaway.
Around Luke woke up the children and they took the dragon with them so that she would be punished for her deeds. Since Mrs. Grindtooth had only one tooth Luke wrapped a chain around it so that the dragon had to follow them. After reaching the river, they prepared Emma for sailing. The dragon didn’t want to enter the water, but she didn’t have much choice. Dragons hated water because it put out their fire. They traveled all the way to the stone door where they saw a waterfall. Everyone was scared but when they crossed the stone door, they found themselves in Morrowland. Jim received a kiss from the happy princess. They decided to share their life stories.
Li Si started. She talked about drifting away from everyone, despite being warned by the maids not to do it. The Pirates took her and placed her inside a cage. She was scared and cold at night because she didn’t have a blanket. The pirates were known as The Wild 13 and every night they sang songs. She heard them saying they had to go to an arranged placed to exchange her for a barrel of schnapps. After her stories everyone shared theirs. Jim was a big angry with Li Si when she told him about the importance of writing and reading. He thought she was lecturing him. After all of the stories, they saw the light of the city of Ping.
After finding a place to disembark they made Emma capable of driving on land again. An old man saw the dragon and ran to the king to tell him about it. There was a lot of excitement on the streets of Ping. When they reached the city, there was a big celebration thrown in their honor. There was flowers and happiness all around them. The Emperor ran to his daughter to his her. Luke and Jim said hello to Ping Pong who became the new minister. Emma received a golden ribbon from the Emperor for her courageous act and the guards took the dragon into an old elephant shack.
Everyone ate their favorite breakfast and then went to rest in their chambers. Luke talked to the Emperor about Jim’s and Li Si’s engagement. He also agreed with the Emperor about building a railway through Mandala because Luke couldn’t go back to Morrowland with Emma.
Sometime around 12 Luke and Jim were woken up by Ping Pong. He told them that the dragon was asking for them. Thanks to them the dragon will become “The Golden Dragon of Wisdom”. It was a title given to dragons who don’t get killed by people. The dragon will fall asleep and be in that state for exactly a year. As a singer of gratitude, she decided to share some wisdom with them. Luke asked how they can get back to Morrowland. Grindtooth told them that on the second day of their journey they will find themselves on an island. They were supposed to anchor the island with some coral branches. Then Jim asked about his origins but the dragon started to fall asleep. She promised to respond when she wakes up. Luke, Jim, and Emma decided to leave in the morning with the Emperor’s ship and go back to Morrowland. Ping Pong brought them a letter from Morrowland from which they found out that everyone was worried about them.
After their afternoon tea, they woke up all of the children eager to get back to their homes. Luke and Jim told the captain everything Grindtooth shared with them, but the captain wasn’t quite convinced with that story. He said that the only way to find out whether it was true or not was to wait for the next day. They also agreed to celebrate the engagement on Morrowland and get married once they get older.
The next day, exactly at noon, they saw a small island. Using a fishnet they caught it and tied to the ship. Jim decided to name the island New Morrowland.
After a few days, around seven o’clock, Mrs. Whaat saw a ship approaching Morrowland. Mr. Sleeve told the king about it and they all ran to the ship. Jim hugged Mrs. Whaat. They showed the citizens the new island and they all agreed it was very nice. The king approved the island’s name and decided to give himself a new title. The Emperor ordered his sailors to establish a phone connection between Morrowland and Mandala. They decided to celebrate the engagement in four weeks.
Mrs. Whaat was sewing a surprise for Li Si and Jim. When the time was right she gave them their presents. Jim got an engine driver suit and Li Si a small wedding dress. Li Si gave Jim a small pipe while she got a laundry washing board. They kissed and celebrated the whole day and in the evening Ping Pong called to congratulate them. Luke took Jim to Emma. Emma was pregnant and Jim was supposed to get his own locomotive. He decided to name her Molly.
After a few days, the Emperor and Li Si went back to Mandala. Jim and Li Si could see each other whenever they wanted, and they could talk over the phone. Morrowland was peaceful, just like before. Luke and Emma rode around, while Jim took care of Molly. The two of them were often seen sitting on the border, telling each other stories and making new plans.
Genre: fantasy novel
Place: Morrowland, Mandala
Luke was a short, round little man who didn’t care if Morrowland needed a locomotive or not. He wore a helmet and an engine driver suit. His eyes were blue and his whole body was black because of soot. He had white teeth and an earring in his ear. He and Jim were best friends.
Emma was a brave, good locomotive
Jim Button was a boy who accidentally ended up on Morrowland. He was very righteous and honest. Jim was engaged to princess Li Si and his best friend was Luke. As an engagement present, he got an engine driver suit from Mrs. Whaat.
King Alfred the Quarter-to-Twelfth was Morrowland’s king. His castle was between two hills. He got his name because he was born at a quarter to twelve. He wore a crown, wore a robe made out of red velvet and plaid slippers. He spent his days on the phone. The king was very worried about Jim and Luke after they left Morrowland.
Mrs. Whaat loved Jim as if she was his mother and her favorite color was purple. She lived in a house which had a store in it.
Ping Pong was a fist-sized little man. His head was a bit bigger than a tennis ball. He became a minister thanks to his brave deeds. Since he was just a little kid, he loved taking naps. Ping Pong was chef’s 32 child. He helped Jim and Luke out a lot and they became good friends.
The Emperor was a tall, old man with a long snow-white beard. He was righteous and honest. The Emperor loved Luke and Jim.
The chef was Ping Pong’s father and he wore his biggest hat for special occasions.
The scientist looked worn out of all of their studies. They sat and read a lot and they were the most educated people in Mandala. Some of them were very tall because they stretched a lot and some of them became short because of all the sitting they did. All of them had golden glasses.
Mrs. Tur Tur was an illusory giant who lived in an oasis. He had a long, gray beard which came to his knees and he made a braid out of it. He wore an old hat and an old dress. Despite being good natured, everyone avoided him. Tur Tur helped Jim and Luke on their journey.
Nepomuk was a half-dragon with a big head and even bigger eyes. He reminded everyone of a hippopotamus because he had many yellow spots on her body. He had a long tail. He was a bit naïve but well natured and helped Jim and Luke a lot.
Mrs. Grindtooth was a dragon bigger than Emma. She had a pointy face and little eyes. She had a slim neck and a single tooth. Grindtooth was very mean in the beginning but after becoming The Golden Dragon of Wisdom, she became good and helped Jim and Luke deal with their living arrangements.
Li Si was the princess of Mandala, engaged to Jim Button. She was held captive by Mrs. Grindtooth for a year. Everyone recognized her for her long braids and the face as smooth as the porcelain of Mandala.
Molly was Emma’s child and a small locomotive which Luke gave to Jim as an engagement present.
Michael Ende Biography
Michael Ende was a famous German writer who was born in 1929 in Bavaria. His father was a famous artist but in the World War II – his art was pronounced to be sick and twisted. After the big attack on Hamburg, Ende went to Munich.
He developed a love for literature and writing at an early age when he started writing poems and stories. He was very interested in theatre and he started working for the Theatre Academy in Munich after which he became a professional actor. He never got an important role or had a big career.
While he was traveling he began to write. He told he wrote his first novel impulsively, without a plan or an idea. The writing was an adventure for him. He experienced the adventures of his characters thru them.
His first book was a success. It was a children’s novel “Jim Button and Luke the Engine Driver” and it brought him an award for the best children’s book in 1961. The book “Momo” was also a success and it was written in 1973 and he acquired world fame with “NeverEnding Story” in 1979.
The most expensive German movie in those times was a movie adaption of the previously mentioned book but the author called it tacky.
Some of his other famous works are: “The Spoilsport”, “A very short Fairytale”, “Mirror in the mirror”…
He died in 1995 from stomach cancer.