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Aan de oever by Rafael Chirbes
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Aan de oever (original 2013; edition 2014)

by Rafael Chirbes, Eugenie Schoolderman, Arie Van der Wal

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20011105,094 (3.88)2
The novel "opens with the discovery of a rotting corpse in the marshes on the outskirts of Olba, Spain--a town wracked by despair after the burst of the economic bubble, and a microcosm of a world of defeat, debt, and corruption. Stuck in this town is Esteban--his small factory bankrupt, his investments stolen by a friend, and his unloved father, a mute invalid, entirely his personal burden. Much of the novel unfolds in Esteban's raw and tormented monologues. But other voices resound from the wreckage--soloists stepping forth from the choir--and their words, sharp as knives, crowd their terse, hypnotic monologues of ruin, prostitution, and loss"--Amazon.com.… (more)
Member:WXC77
Title:Aan de oever
Authors:Rafael Chirbes
Other authors:Eugenie Schoolderman, Arie Van der Wal
Info:Amsterdam Meridiaan 2014
Collections:Your library
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On the Edge by Rafael Chirbes (2013)

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» See also 2 mentions

Spanish (6)  Catalan (2)  Dutch (2)  English (1)  All languages (11)
This book is a little too perfect for me, and I really doubt my objectivity. Grumpy old man narrator? Yes. Syntactical complexity? Yes. Translated by the simply amazing Margaret Jull Costa? Yes. Criticism of greed, capitalism, and exploitation? Yes. Recognition that most social injustice has deep, historical roots? Of course.

Chirbes is as dark as Bernhard, but takes it all far more seriously. There is no way you could read this, as you can read Thomas B, as a joke, as just a wild exaggeration that might point to something important, or might not. This book is really serious. The prose is wonderful, and had an interesting effect on me; I don't think any book I've ever read has made me *feel* as this book made me feel (an emotion or mood that I can't actually name; perhaps it's just "the Chirbean"?). And it made me think, too, in deeply unpleasant, uncomfortable ways. But mostly it leaves me speechless with admiration.

Unless this book is a real outlier, it's an outrage that none of Chirbes' other work is available in English. ( )
  stillatim | Oct 23, 2020 |
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» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Chirbes, Rafaelprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Jull Costa, MargaretTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Miles, ValerieAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schoolderman, EugenieTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wal, Arie van derTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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The novel "opens with the discovery of a rotting corpse in the marshes on the outskirts of Olba, Spain--a town wracked by despair after the burst of the economic bubble, and a microcosm of a world of defeat, debt, and corruption. Stuck in this town is Esteban--his small factory bankrupt, his investments stolen by a friend, and his unloved father, a mute invalid, entirely his personal burden. Much of the novel unfolds in Esteban's raw and tormented monologues. But other voices resound from the wreckage--soloists stepping forth from the choir--and their words, sharp as knives, crowd their terse, hypnotic monologues of ruin, prostitution, and loss"--Amazon.com.

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