October 03, 2006

Desert fortresses

Jiayuguan Fortress
Originally uploaded by macchi.
Since my book discovery post I of course already have a long list of books that I can't wait to get to. Some of them are waiting for me in my hotel room and apartment. Others are in the shop. Such as a new translation of what is apparently an Italian classic: Il deserto dei Tartari by Dino Buzzati.

I'm not sure exactly why I want to read it but the review that I read yesterday (in an old issue of Vrij Nederland, for those of you who are curious) sounds great. It sounds like a story of isolation and desperation, and in a very surreal setting. Possibly that doesn't sound like the best descriptioni. Nevertheless, I've become curious. After looking the book up at my local bookseller, the text starts with the question: Is a person courageous enough to determine his own life? Hmm, it might just be the right book at the right time...

It was also made into a film, directed by Valerio Zurlini. That made me even more interested. One of his movies which I saw months ago was great. Beautifully shot in black and white, great sense of humour and a very nice change from the usual Hollywood-hits.

(The picture is added because the story is set at an army outpost in the desert - which made me think of the fortress in Jiayuguan)

No comments: