By the Sea

by Abdulrazak Gurnah | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 0747557853 Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingUrfinwing of Wolfsburg, Niedersachsen Germany on 11/6/2021
Buy from one of these Booksellers: | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon DE | Amazon FR | Amazon IT |
4 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingUrfinwing from Wolfsburg, Niedersachsen Germany on Saturday, November 6, 2021
Ordered some days ago after the Nobel prize announcement... and it got here today :o)

Participants for a ring in 2022:
+ bluezwuzl
+ mimi4711 SKIPPED
+ Dani75

Journal Entry 2 by wingUrfinwing at Wolfsburg, Niedersachsen Germany on Friday, December 31, 2021
Starting today

"It is so different here that it seems as if one life has ended and I am now living another one." (p.2)
thoughts on furniture (bottom of p.3) ---> M's sofa !!!
"Think of me as one of the objects that Europe took away with her." (p.12)
the climax of the bargaining on p.29 bottom :o)
"The name of my father is not sacred." p.76
"...there were two large clay jars in there, probably being stored for a relative or a friend, or a relative of a friend or a friend of a relative." p.84 (an antimetabole?)
the story of the fisherman and the jinn ! (p.84ff)
the little red book Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung published in 1964 under the auspices of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), a collection of more than four hundred select quotations from Mao’s speeches and writings
his mothers advise "not to let the Germans fuddle and gull" him (p.111) - sth. like to shanghai so.
"It was a staggering thought, how little it had been possible to know and remain contented." (p.122) a coming-of-age moment
! the washing of the feet !
"that sustained passion for ideas that could not be destroyed completely ... through it all we manage to cling to somethng that makes sense" (p.135f)
his journey from Dresden to Plymouth could be an book in itself
"Not satisfied with my pointless and valueless life, I still want to relish its gigantic pointlessness." (p.144)
"They were people ... whose wisdom depended on their conviction of everyone else's idiocy." (p.148)
"I heard the judgement, and had heard such judgements before, and had no answer except that I too had judged badly before." (p.153)
"...that the children of the pious turn out to be wickedness itself, as if the Satan had personally selected them for corruption and sin, so as to expose the thinness of human resolve and demonstrate the power of evil." (p.163f)
"I never asked how they came to marry in the first place, for to see the way they shuffled themselves for each other's convenience was to imagine that this was something they wanted." (p.184)

I collected some vocab: afreet, kanzu, dhow, ud-al-qamari (Oud / Agarwood), qadhi (Kadi im Duden:), ablution, haram (opposed to halal), Bokharra, almira, hessian, denizen, waif, Kaskazi, ewer, bier...
but I stopped that for the sake of reading speed. Indeed the style reminds me a little of Saramago, a kind of breathless forwardforward. Although here are full stops . . . I just run over them without pausing :o-

1.2. Finished
with a remarkable last sentence!
In the end, it took me much longer then anticipated, the language is brilliant but in the middle I somewhat lost interest in the narrative of the old man... got ALERT again when it came to the events during and after the Zanzibar Revolution - the terror of despotism (p.212-231) - sth. recurrent in history...

TBR: Bartleby, the Scrivener (short story by Herman Melville)

Journal Entry 3 by wingUrfinwing at Wolfsburg, Niedersachsen Germany on Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Released 1 yr ago (2/2/2022 UTC) at Wolfsburg, Niedersachsen Germany


Sent on to bluezwuzl
by mail
(discovered a mailbox in Tappenbeck, actually two, and another one in Warmenau:)

Journal Entry 4 by bluezwuzl at Altdorf (Niederbayern), Bayern Germany on Saturday, February 5, 2022
Thanks for this book-ring! Just a few days ago, I got the German version of "Desertion", so I'll have quite a dose of Gurnah for the coming weeks... 🙂
A remarkable insight into a region, where every single word - and not
only that actually spoken - has (or had?) to be considered in its various possible consequences for both, the speaker and the recipient, which seems to make a minefield out of every conversation.
I loved the language, but somehow missed the luxury of having a glossary of the words in italics...

Journal Entry 5 by bluezwuzl at -- Per Post geschickt/ Persönlich weitergegeben --, Bayern Germany on Saturday, August 6, 2022

Released 7 mos ago (8/6/2022 UTC) at -- Per Post geschickt/ Persönlich weitergegeben --, Bayern Germany


As mimi4711 has a copy of her own now, the book goes to the next reader on the list

Journal Entry 6 by Dani75 at Rudersberg, Baden-Württemberg Germany on Monday, August 8, 2022
The book arrived today. Thanks for sending it along :)

Journal Entry 7 by Dani75 at Rudersberg, Baden-Württemberg Germany on Monday, January 2, 2023
What an interesting read. It took me a little while to get into it. Sometimes I struggled to keep up with the events in the story and at times thought I must have missed reading bits, but in the end it all made sense. I enjoyed the atmosphere of the storytelling and this made me read on. And of course I wanted to know how the story ended, or how the old man's journey started.
Very worthwhile reading!

Released 2 mos ago (1/2/2023 UTC) at -- Per Post geschickt/ Persönlich weitergegeben --, Baden-Württemberg Germany


Macht sich heute auf den Weg zurück nach Hause. Vielen Dank für diesen Buchring!

Journal Entry 9 by wingUrfinwing at Wolfsburg, Niedersachsen Germany on Tuesday, January 3, 2023
It already arrived! :o- how's that possible?
Thanks to you two for your JEs and for the shipping.
Not sure yet what to do next... maybe it is on someones wishlist?


Ja, z.B. bei Mary-T :)

Journal Entry 10 by wingUrfinwing at Wolfsburg, Niedersachsen Germany on Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Released 1 mo ago (1/31/2023 UTC) at Wolfsburg, Niedersachsen Germany


Versandt an Mary-T

Journal Entry 11 by wingMary-Twing at Bretzfeld, Baden-Württemberg Germany on Saturday, February 4, 2023
"On a late November afternoon Saleh Omar arrives at Gatwick Airport from Zanzibar, a far away island in the Indian Ocean. With him he has a small bag in which there lies his most precious possession - a mahagony box containing incense. He used to own a furniture shop, have a house and be a husband and father, but now he is an asylum seeker from paradise; silence his only protection.
Meanwhile Latif Mahmud, someone intimately connected with Saleh's past, lives quietly alone in his London flat. When Saleh and Latif meet in an English seaside town, a story is unravelled. It is a story of love and betrayal, of seduction and of possesion, and of a people desperately trying to find stability amidst the maelstrom of their times."

Many thanks urfin! :o)

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