Margriet de Moor, Author, Margriet De Moor, Author, Paul Vincent, Translator , trans. from the Dutch by Paul Vincent. Arcade $24.95 (256p) ISBN 978-1-55970-546-2

De Moor has crafted this complex novel as if she were the composer of a piece of haunting chamber music, orchestrating the heartaches, loves, fortunes and losses of a wandering gypsy whose family is torn apart by the cruelty of post-WWII Europe, and who experiments with creating a different life for himself. As the novel begins, it is 1963, and 27-year-old Joseph Andrias's travels with his family caravan are about to be interrupted. On a wet summer day in a bar in Benckelo, in the Twente countryside of eastern Holland, he meets Lucie, a strange, wild redhead, who lives with her father, Gerard, on a horse farm outside town. It is love at first sight for this unlikely pair, who marry and have three children. Joseph and Lucie share a deep-rooted passion, a vast knowledge of horses and the desire to build a profitable stable. Despite the success of his marriage, however, Joseph cannot escape his heritage and the need to break free every summer, a practice that his wife never interferes with. Where he goes on his travels remains a mystery that is only gradually revealed in the grand tales he spins for Lucie, chronicling the heroic wartime deeds of his mother, Gisela; the family patriarch, Nikolaus Adrias Plato; and Jannosch Franz, a resistance fighter with a strange tie to Lucie's father, Gerard. The intricate, carefully calculated counterpoint of de Moor's narrative weaves the strands of many stories into a single glittering whole, illuminating the fate of gypsies in modern times and making a beautiful mosaic out of highly colored bits and fragments. (Jan.)

Reviewed on: 01/07/2002
Release date: 01/01/2002
Genre: Fiction
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