This is my favourite novel by Bellow.
I've read it while I was at the university instead of studying to pass brilliantly one of the fundamental exams on semiotic we had.
I think I've done a good choice.
Bellow abandons Chicago and the US for a while in The Dean's December making a vivid and powerful portrait of Romania during the most difficult years of its isolation behind the Iron Curtain. It doesn't seem a description which aims to criticize or demonize communism. This novel looks like an objective view on a foreign land, on a different planet.
Bellow has never been so focused on a concrete, tangible and specific plot, without renouncing to his elegance in writing.