The Body

The Body

Mircea Cartarescu

When the familiarity and comfort of the study in which he writes falls victim to the dictator's urbanite megalomania, Mircea returns to his parent's apartment on Stefan cel Mare Avenue. Here, "between the bedposts and the radiator", the past comes back to life, as he descends into the "depths of time". Bucharest is awash with lights and the city is transformed into literature as Mircea's hallucinations conjure up great-grandfather Vasili, whose nightly visits to the Turkish Baths turn heaven into hell; as, every morning, his great-grandmother Maria is transformed into a crimson-winged butterfly, while sects of ascetic Copts seek fulfilment by means of auto-castration and Mircea listens to Herman the eccentric read out loud from the forbidden Bible. Der Körper is an exploratory offbeat novel filled with nightmare visions; an inspired amalgamation of fantasticism and physics, tradition and modernity, sensuality and abstraction. This second part of Cartarescu's Orbitor trilogy is an alchemistic masterpiece that ranks alongside Gabriel García Márquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude and James Joyce's Ulysses.

"Cartarescu is blessed with the vivid imagination of a prodigious child and the narrative virtuosity of an old master." Der Spiegel

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Bulgaria (Faber), Catalan (Periscopi), France (Denoel), Greece (Livanis), Hungary (L‘Harmattan), Italy (Voland), Netherlands (Bezige Bij), Norway (Bokvennen), Spain (Impedimenta), Sweden (Bonniers), Turkey (Ayrinti)

The Body

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