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Zorba the Greek
by Nikos Kazantzakis | Literature & Fiction
Registered by wingDelphi_Readerwing of Δελφοί - Delphi, Fokida Greece on 9/28/2017
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status (set by 1NovelIdea): to be read

3 journalers for this copy...

Journal Entry 1 by wingDelphi_Readerwing from Δελφοί - Delphi, Fokida Greece on Thursday, September 28, 2017

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This book starts its journey with Book Crossing from Delphi, Greece

"Set before the start of the First World War, this moving fable sees a young English writer set out to Crete to claim a small inheritance. But when he arrives, he meets Alexis Zorba, a middle-aged Greek man with a zest for life. Zorba has had a family and many lovers, has fought in the Balkan wars, has lived and loved - he is a simple but deep man who lives every moment fully and without shame. As their friendship develops, the Englishman is gradually won over, transformed and inspired along with the reader.

Zorba the Greek, Nikos Kazantzakis' most popular and enduring novel, has its origins in the author's own experiences in the Peleponnesus in the 1920s. His swashbuckling hero has legions of fans across the world and his adventures are as exhilarating now as they were on first publication in the 1950s."

(For those who are interested on those things, Zorba is on the "1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die" list too)

~~~~~~To the person who found this book:~~~~~~

Welcome to, where we are trying to make the whole world a library!

If you have not already done so, please make a journal entry so we know this book has found a new home. Drop a few lines on where and how you found this book and what you thought of it. You don't need to join BookCrossing and you can remain completely anonymous. However, I encourage you to join so that you can follow this book's future travels. It's fun and free, and your personal information will never be shared or sold.

This book is now yours, and you can keep it if you choose, although I would love you to read and then share it. You can pass it on someone you know or release it once again in the wild, leaving it on a park bench, a phone booth, a hostel lobby...wherever you think it's suitable for the book to continue it's journey. If you pass it along, please make a release note to let others know where you left it.

I hope you enjoy the book!


Journal Entry 2 by wingDelphi_Readerwing at Δελφοί - Delphi, Fokida Greece on Thursday, September 28, 2017

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This book is a quite authobiographical book of Nikos Kazantzakis. It is the tale of a young Greek intellectual (character based on the author himself) who ventures to escape his bookish life with the aid of the boisterous and mysterious Alexis Zorbas (character based on Yiorgis Zorbas).

A few additional info, skip reading if you are not interested...

Nikos Kazantzakis, while known abroad mostly as an important Greek author, was a person interested in all kind of stuff, having a complex private and public life, been a diplomat, a translator of important works from/to Ancient Greek, English, German, French and Spanish, a writer of children's books and theater plays, a miner, a politician, a journalist...
His philosophical, religious and spiritual explorations reflect on many of his books, while the ultra-conservative church at the time treated him as a blasphemus devil...
The Greek authorities threatened to bring him to trial for atheism on account of "Askitiki" on 1930 while the Pope placed "The Last Temptation " on the Roman Catholic Index of Forbidden Books on 1954. Nikos Kazantzakis telegraphed the Vatican a phrase from the Christian apologist Tertullian: "Ad tuum, Domine, tribunal appello" (I lodge my appeal at your tribunal, Lord). He said the same to the Orthodox hierarchy in Athens, adding: "You gave me your curse, holy Fathers. I give you a blessing: May your conscience be as clear as mine, and may you be as moral and religious as I am."

Nikos Kazantzakis based his fictional Alexis Zorbas on a real person,Yiorgis (George) Zorbas, a man with an adventurous life whom he met on Mt Athos around 1915. They become friends and they traveled together to Mani area of Peloponnese on 1917, where they worked as miners in Prastova. It was their experiences there that Nikos Kazantzakis later transfered into "The Life and Times of Alexis Zorbas", later translated as "Zorba the Greek".
On 1919 , Prime Minister of Greece, Eleftherios Venizelos, appointed Kazantzakis as General Director of the Ministry of Welfare, with the specific mission of repatriating 150.000 Greeks who were being persecuted by the Bolsheviks in the Caucasus. When Kazantzakis departed, he included Zorbas in his team. After various adventures, Yiorgis Zorbas settled later in a village near present-day Skopje. Till his death on 1941, Zorbas retained a strong bond with Kazantzakis who was heart-broken when he learned of his death.
On Kazantzakis' book "Report to Greco", Zorbas is mentioned as one of the most influential persons for the author, along with Homer, Henri-Louis Bergson, Friedrich Nietzsche and Buddha.

Nikos Kazantzakis' chosen epitaph is inscribed on his own tomb, reflecting his life philosophy:
"Den elpizo tipota. Den fovumai tipota. Eimai eleftheros."
(I hope for nothing. I fear nothing. I am free.)

Well, believe it or not, I'm trying hard to keep this journal entry short!

Nikos Kazantzakis was and still is a very important figure on Greek literature and not only. Parts of his books, including parts of Zorba, are still teached in Greek schools.
There was a whole saga on how Yiorgis Zorbas' extended family ended up in courts with the author after the book was published, because on those conservative eras they thought he mispresented Zorbas' personality and made him look like a tramp. Even new words were introduced in Greek language after the book, such as "Zorbaliki" when someone behaves as a thug or a toughie!

Many people are more familiar with the related movie of 1964 starring Antony Quinn, Alan Bates, Irene Papa etc, directed by Mihalis Kakogiannis. And/or with the famous music composed by Mikis Theodorakis and the syrtaki dance invented by Yiorgos Provias. If I start commenting on those too, we will need pages after pages of journal entries and there will still be many aspects of the story left untold.

I will just say that the book is much more philosophical than the movie and that while some actions and behaviors described are very disturbing by today's standards, one has to accept the plot within the merits of its time and place.

I hope feature readers will find this book interesting and let us know what they make of it!  

Journal Entry 3 by wingDelphi_Readerwing at By Mail, A RABCK -- Controlled Releases on Tuesday, October 03, 2017

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Released 11 mos ago (10/3/2017 UTC) at By Mail, A RABCK -- Controlled Releases


Zorba the Greek, an adventurous soul, enjoyed his stay in Delphi, Greece but now seeks new expeditions... So he is now heading to Kilburn, Derbyshire,UK for a change of scenery and then... who knows?

Good Luck and don't forget to write home from time to time! 

Journal Entry 4 by wingmrsmontaguewing at Kilburn, Derbyshire United Kingdom on Saturday, October 14, 2017

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Thank you for sending me some books all the way from Greece! :) 

Journal Entry 5 by wingmrsmontaguewing at Horsley Book Exchange Phonebox in Horsley, Derbyshire United Kingdom on Sunday, October 22, 2017

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Released 11 mos ago (10/22/2017 UTC) at Horsley Book Exchange Phonebox in Horsley, Derbyshire United Kingdom


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- If you can, please register when and where you found this book. Using the BCID number from the BookCrossing label inside the front cover, log on to the site, then follow the instructions to make a brief journal entry. The person who released the book will be happy to know it's in safe hands!
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Journal Entry 6 by 1NovelIdea at Sidmouth, -- Highways, Roadsides & Services -- United Kingdom on Saturday, September 01, 2018

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Never read this classic so a brilliant find and looking forward to reading it. 

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