Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin: a controversial novel about passion, love, shame and bisexuality

James Baldwin, Giovanni’s Room Published 2007 by Penguin Books, 150p (first published 1956)   David, the main protagonist in Giovanni’s Room is one of the most irritating characters I have come across lately; it’s one of those so self-centered and so self-sufficient men that could easily make you put down the book with exasperation. But… Continue reading Giovanni’s Room by James Baldwin: a controversial novel about passion, love, shame and bisexuality

Louis I, King of the Sheep by Olivier Tallec: a smart, meditative story on how power changes identities and priorities and on how a good leader should not be

Olivier Tallec, Louis I, King of the Sheep Published 2015 by Enchanted Lion Books, 34p It was a nice coincidence how in the last couple of weeks, still very anchored in the Romanian political reality, still reading the news every day and revolting myself in front of my laptop, it happened to come across and… Continue reading Louis I, King of the Sheep by Olivier Tallec: a smart, meditative story on how power changes identities and priorities and on how a good leader should not be

The Tale of the Unknown Island by José Saramago: a thoughtful allegory on human existence and the significance of being a dreamer

José Saramago, The Tale of the Unknown Island. Illustrated by Peter Sis. Translated from the Portuguese by Margaret Jull Costa Published 1999 by Harcourt Brace & Company, 52p In 1998 José Saramago was awarded The Nobel Prize in Literature being considered a writer “who with parables sustained by imagination, compassion and irony continually enables us… Continue reading The Tale of the Unknown Island by José Saramago: a thoughtful allegory on human existence and the significance of being a dreamer

George Orwell’s Animal Farm, stunningly illustrated by Ralph Steadman: a great allegory on how dictatorship, propaganda and political injustice work

George Orwell, Animal Farm. A Fairy Story. Pictures by Ralph Steadman Published in 1995 by Secker & Warburg, London (first published in Great Britain in 1945), 180p/ In romana: Ferma animalelor, Editura Polirom   The result of preaching totalitarian doctrines is to weaken the instinct by means of which free peoples know what is or… Continue reading George Orwell’s Animal Farm, stunningly illustrated by Ralph Steadman: a great allegory on how dictatorship, propaganda and political injustice work

The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway: a wonderful fable on human courage, persistence and hope

Ernest Hemingway, The Old Man and the Sea. In limba romana: Batranul si marea Published in 1999 by Vintage, 112 p (first published in 1952). I haven’t read The Old Man and the Sea until now; I kept putting it on my reading lists but I have always ended by choosing something else instead. I thought it… Continue reading The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway: a wonderful fable on human courage, persistence and hope

The Liszts: a humorous, gothic-flavored picture book which celebrates spontaneity and reminds us that the unfamiliar is part of our lives

Kyo Maclear, Júlia Sardà, The Liszts Published 2016 by Andersen Press, 40p (First published 2016 in Canada by Tundra Books)   The Liszts is not for those who expect a little biography on Franz Liszt but for those who obsessively make lists. Preoccupied to record and file all the things we consider important we sometimes… Continue reading The Liszts: a humorous, gothic-flavored picture book which celebrates spontaneity and reminds us that the unfamiliar is part of our lives

After the Banquet by Yukio Mishima: a portrait of a marriage through domestic and political aspirations in a post-war Japan

Yukio Mishima, After the Banquet/ Dupa banchet Published 2001 by Vintage (originally published in Japanese in 1960), 288p. In limba romana: Dupa banchet, Editura Humanitas, 2004   When first published in 1960, The New Yorker called After the Banquet the most profound thing Mishima had done until then and acknowledged the author as an international… Continue reading After the Banquet by Yukio Mishima: a portrait of a marriage through domestic and political aspirations in a post-war Japan