Thursday, February 21, 2008

Readers may be interested in the following books which have been added to stock at Galway City Library:

White King, by György Dragomán, Houghton Mifflin.
Eleven-year-old Djata makes sure he is always home on Sundays. It is the day the State Security came to take his father away, and he believes it will be a Sunday when his father is finally sent home again. This disturbing, compelling, beautifully translated novel is set in an unnamed totalitarian, communist regime, based on the nationalist, Stalinist, poverty-stricken Romania of the 1980s where Dragomán grew up. The most moving parts of the book are the quieter moments - how one morning he slips out of the flat to cut tulips for his mother.

Night Train to Lisbon, by Pascal Mercier, Grove Press
Raimund Gregorius, a Swiss professor of languages, is crossing a rainy bridge in Bern when a mysterious woman writes a phone number on his forehead and utters a single word in Portuguese. A number of unexplained and seemingly unrelated events conspire to tear Gregorius out of his solitary and unvarying existence and send him to Lisbon in search of both the woman and a book’s author. This novel caused a sensation in Europe and spent 140 weeks on the German best-sellers lists. The book becomes a moving meditation on the defining moments in our lives, the "silent explosions that change everything."

The Bad Girl, by Mario Vargas Llosa, Farrar, Straus and Giroux
"What was her name, her home, her life, her past?" wonders Flaubert’s Frédéric Moreau on seeing Mme Arnoux for the first time. "Even the desire for physical possession gave way to an aching curiosity which knew no bounds." Much the same feeling is stirred in the narrator of this novel by the woman to whom he consecrates his life. So indefatigably unreliable and elusive will she prove, that the narrator’s curiosity, far from being satisfied, is endlessly renewed. He will meet her again and again, over forty years, in several different cities, and fall in love with her anew each and every time. (TLS)

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