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The Library of Babel

A Spin-off of http://bookwormshead.blogspot.co.uk

Il viaggio delle bottiglie vuote

Il viaggio delle bottiglie vuote - Kader Abdolah, Elisabetta Svaluto Moreolo Sometimes there is no need for a plot.
In this short and mostly autobiographical book (calling it a novel, would be wrong as not so much happens) Kader Abdolah did a good and sober job.

Moving to the Netherlands as an Iranian ex-pat, the protagonist with his family begins a Dutch life in a remote corner of the country, close to river Ijssel.

Once there it's all about his curiosity for the weird and yet kind behavior of his Dutch neighbour, Renè, the only one who talks to him.
And while observing Renè and his strange family, becoming more and more familiar with him the protagonist reminiscences about legends and episodes of his childhood in Iran.

There is so much symbolism in these pages. Abdolah chooses a very dry and essential style that creates a sort of poetical flow in everyday's life.
We can feel the loneliness of the well-taught man who's still not able to communicate in a new language and his daily and often useless struggle for adaptating to a new life.