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Bitter Lemons of Cyprus
by Lawrence Durrell | Travel
Registered by wingAnnimanniwing of Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on 4/27/2008
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status (set by Kimmi): travelling


5 journalers for this copy...

Journal Entry 1 by wingAnnimanniwing from Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Sunday, April 27, 2008

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Amazon.co.uk Review
"While Cyprus is often touted as a tourist destination, the origins of the prolonged war between the island's Greek and the Turkish communities are less well known. In Bitter Lemons of Cyprus--first published in 1957--Lawrence Durrell blends the story of beginning a new life in this beautiful place with an account of the conflict's beginnings. It is a narrative that retains political relevance today.

The book starts out like something by Peter Mayle or Chris Stewart, a forerunner of the "good life abroad" genre. Durrell is a hard-up writer looking for Mediterranean peace and a stunning old house--Cyprus obliges. But circumstances and Durrell's poetic genius ensure that the book is far more than a glib chronicle of hilarious events and eccentric neighbours. These exist in plenty, and Durrell writes about them with zest and great wit, but slowly he gets drawn into the unfolding tragedy of Cyprus's battle for self-determination.

The revolt ignites, and Durrell's tranquil life is shattered. His stay on Cyprus becomes one of great sadness, which he communicates with restrained fury as he describes the political transformations and paradoxes that overtake the island. In his poetic and loving descriptions of places and people--most of them remarkably steadfast in the face of political convulsions--there is an empathy and an attention to detail which provides a poignant memorial to a life which, it becomes clear, was shattered as much by the indolence of men in grey suits as by the violent spirits of the hills." --Toby Green


Product Description

"One of a three-part series of Lawrence Durrell's writings. In this volume he explores the island of Cyprus, evoking the sun-drenched landscapes, dazzling light and vivid blue skies of the Aegean."

About the Author

"Lawrence Durrell was born in 1912 in India. He attended the Jesuit College at Darjeeling and St Edmund's School, Canterbury. His first literary work, The Black Book, appeared in Paris in 1958. His first collection of poems, A Private Country, was published in 1943, followed by the three Island books: Prospero's Cell, Reflections on a Marine Venus, about Rhodes, and Bitter Lemons, his account of life in Cyprus. Durrell's wartime sojourn in Egypt led to his masterpiece The Alexandria Quartet, completed in southern France where he settled permanently in 1957. Between the Quartet and The Avignon Quintet he wrote the two-decker Tunc and Nunquam. His oeuvre includes plays, a book of criticism, translations, travel writing, and humorous stories about the diplomatic corps. Caesar's Vast Ghost, his reflections on the history and culture of Provence, including a late flowering of poems, appeared a few days before his death in Sommières in 1990." 


Journal Entry 2 by wingAnnimanniwing at Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Thursday, July 15, 2010

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What an enjoyable read - and it had sat on my shelf unread for ten whole years! I've been to Cyprus once and after I started reading the book, I kept telling my husband that I want to go back :)

I liked Durrell's poetic style a lot. He definitely has a knack for describing the environment so that the reader can not only see but also taste, smell and feel the environment. What I enjoyed most, though, were the chapters focusing on everyday life and people - and I must admit to skimming through the parts about the politics of the era. 


Journal Entry 3 by wingAnnimanniwing at Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland on Thursday, July 15, 2010

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Released 6 yrs ago (7/16/2010 UTC) at Espoo, Uusimaa / Nyland Finland

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Now on its way to jumpingin in Canada. She picked it from the Global Village VBB. Happy reading! 


Journal Entry 4 by wingjumpinginwing at North Vancouver, British Columbia Canada on Thursday, July 29, 2010

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Another wonderful-looking book from Annimanni is now on my TBR shelf. I've read Gerald Durrell's books about their early days in Greece, so I'm looking forward to reading this one. Thanks, Annimanni! 


Journal Entry 5 by wingjumpinginwing at Vancouver, British Columbia Canada on Tuesday, July 31, 2012

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This was an interesting read! I learned a lot about the history behind the conflict in Cyprus, as well as about the everyday lives of the people there.

This book will soon be on its way to wildflower37, who requested it from debbie4osu's nonfiction VBB. 


Journal Entry 6 by wingjumpinginwing at Vancouver, British Columbia Canada on Tuesday, July 31, 2012

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Released 4 yrs ago (7/31/2012 UTC) at Vancouver, British Columbia Canada

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Travelling by surface mail to wildflower37. 


Journal Entry 7 by wildflower37 at Montclair, New Jersey USA on Saturday, August 04, 2012

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This just arrived today. Thanks for the note reminding me it was my selection from the VBB. For a moment I thought it was for a ring and thought I would need to read right away. Instead, now I know I can wait and savor it. Many thanks for sharing! 


Journal Entry 8 by wildflower37 at Montclair, New Jersey USA on Sunday, June 23, 2013

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Released 4 yrs ago (6/23/2013 UTC) at Montclair, New Jersey USA

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Sent today as a wishlist RABCK. I can see that i am not making good progress on my TBR shelves, so i thought i would share. Enjoy! 


Journal Entry 9 by rem_LovesOU at Carrollton, Texas USA on Thursday, June 27, 2013

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Oh yay. Surprise RABCK. Thank you wildflower37. You're a real gem! 


Journal Entry 10 by rem_LovesOU at Carrollton, Texas USA on Monday, October 21, 2013

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Released 3 yrs ago (10/20/2013 UTC) at Carrollton, Texas USA

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The book is off to Uganda for a International school. 


Journal Entry 11 by Kimmi at Kampala, Kampala Uganda on Saturday, February 08, 2014

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Christmas in February! This parcel of books had been waiting at the post office since the 7th of November (having been posted on the 22nd of October) but the first claim form was put in the wrong box so I was only made aware of it on the 20th of January. Never mind! The book is here and I have never read anything set in Cyprus so I am quite looking forward to it. Thank you! 


Journal Entry 12 by Kimmi at Kampala, Kampala Uganda on Sunday, June 15, 2014

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This book will be released at Flavours in Jinja, Uganda. They have a bookshelf there where you can trade a book or donate to take a book. The collection looks a little tired despite all the mzungu that eat there. I think leaving my collection of books there will help boost that little bookshelf and help these books continue on their worldwide journey! 


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