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Lost Paradise

Cees Nooteboom, Author, Susan Massotty, Translator
Cees Nooteboom, Author, Susan Massotty, Translator , trans. from the Dutch by Susan Massotty. Grove $23 (151p) ISBN 978-0-8021-1855-4
Paperback - 151 pages - 978-0-8021-4388-4
Paperback - 151 pages - 978-0-09-949715-8
Open Ebook - 160 pages - 978-1-55584-871-2
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Eminent Dutch novelist Nooteboom (All Soul's Day ) weaves an imaginative tale of redemption from the intersecting lives of travelers. After surviving a gang rape in São Paulo, a young, affluent Brazilian woman, Alma, takes off for Australia with her best friend, Almut: the two plan to train as masseuses. Nooteboom then cuts to an embittered middle-aged critic, Erik Zondag, who is cast out of his home in Amsterdam by his fed-up younger girlfriend and sent to an Alpine spa in order to dry out and become a “different man.” The first part of the novel tracks the two Brazilians as they travel though Australia with hope of stopping at the legendary Aboriginal Sickness Dreaming Place. Their Australian adventures take a turn involving the Angel Project, a multisite piece of participatory art in Perth. For the second part, Eric endures a punishingly ascetic stay at the Alpine spa, where he recognizes his masseuse. Framed by masterful reflections on misunderstandings in life and literature, Nooteboom's short work, at once delicate and chiseled, achieves a dreamlike suspension of time and place. (Oct.)

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