Sklepy cynamonowe; Sanatorium pod Klepsydrą
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Sklepy cynamonowe; Sanatorium pod Klepsydrą

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  1,496 ratings  ·  84 reviews
The collected fiction of "one of the most original imaginations in modern Europe" (Cynthia Ozick)

Bruno Schulz's untimely death at the hands of a Nazi stands as one of the great losses to modern literature. During his lifetime, his work found little critical regard, but word of his remarkable talents gradually won him an international readership. This volume brings togethe...more
Paperback, 260 pages
Published January 2005 by Wydawnictwo Dolnośląskie (first published June 1st 1989)
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Community Reviews

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Just intermittently rereading one of my absolute favorites... if you haven't read this collection (which includes Sanatorium Under the Sign of the Hourglass) do yourself a favor and read one of the great books. Schulz's sketches are equally great. Here is a lovely website dedicated to his art & writing:

...and if you don't know Schulz's fate, read his wiki-biography or whatever, but be prepared for some genuine 20th century tragedy.

The first recorded Polish sente...more
Nate D
Nov 04, 2010 Nate D rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those who walk with fascination through labyrinths of memory
Recommended to Nate D by: Wojciech Has
Even in this volume's overture, "August", an insatiable suction into the hallucinatory blind-bright swarming-dark fetid verdant depths of summer, even then at the very start the sheer overcrowded prose-intensity of this "Polish Kafka" seemed to be surpassing anything I'd encountered from the primary Czech Kafka. And then it just goes from there, and goes and goes, through automatons and comets, labyrinths and stork-swarms. I've seen this sort of reeling mythic recollection attempted many times,...more
One of the most haunting, beautiful, amazing, nuanced, and important books that I've ever read. The Street of Crocodiles is profoundly difficult, delicious in its complexity, and while some have compared him favorably to both Proust and Kafka, both comparisons fall flat. Read this book. Buy it. Lend it to out. Buy it again. Lend it out. Please read this book.
I became aware of Bruno Schultz while reading The Messiah of Stokholm by Cynthia Ozik and decided to read the works of this seemingly obscure author. Schultz's work contains some of the most beautiful prose I have ever read. I don't understand why this author is not more widely known. I read it slowly, savoring the language and enjoying the stories as told by this exceptional Jewish holocaust victim. Thank goodness for writers like Cynthia Ozik whose goal it is to expose great but little-known a...more
(This review is only for The Street of Crocodiles - the remaining four stories will be added when read.)

Schulz has penned an utterly gorgeous collection of disjointed set pieces here, placed in his native Galician city in a chromagnostic variation of the world, one wherein colour and sensation come alive and stain organic beings with their prismatic hues; where inanimate objects, especially home furnishings like wallpaper and cupboards, doors and closets, have been soaked with the memories of li...more
Another book that came up in two of my classes this semester. Bruno Schulz (1892-1942) was a Polish writer. His output was not huge (he was gunned down during World War II) and mainly consisted of two collections of short stories: "The Street of the Crocodiles" and "Sanatorium Under the Sign of the Hourglass." Both take Schulz's childhood as the focal point and both deeply reimagine it. I guess you could call Schulz's style magical realism. For example, during the course of the two collections,...more
The Street of Crocodiles gave me weird dreams. I believe that an intense, honest, and deliberate reading of this book allows the reader to experience a brief form of insanity. At times delicious, at times nauseating. Often both at once. The book is surreal in that it follows its own dreamlike logic-- meandering, waltzing, often curling up for naps-- and the reader is either taken in (keeps dreaming) or repulsed (wakes up.) It's here but nowhere else that I understand the comparisons to Kafka. No...more
My review

In July my father left to take the waters; he left me with my mother and my older brother at the mercy of the summer days, white from the heat and stunning. Stupefied by the light, we leafed through that great book of the holiday, all of its pages ablaze with splendour; their sickly sweet pulp, deep within, made from golden pears.

Adela would return on luminous mornings, like Pomona from the fire of the enkindled day, tipping from her basket the colourful beauty of the sun: glistening wi
This book turned my notions of writing and reading on its head. Such beautiful writing, and fantastic- where a perfectly described, familiar feeling scene suddenly becomes surreal, where time and objects can transform without limit. Don't expect plot driven writing, but a full exploration of the bounds of written words and equally full pocket of rewards for patient readers. A good description of Schulz' writing style is contained within his writing in 'The Republic of Dreams'. He describes a gro...more
Просматривая старые фотографии из Кракова, вспомнил, как проходя по улице Кроводерской увидел вывеску «Sex sklep» – для знающего польский – все в порядке, для филолога – гроб с музыкой, хотя всего лишь в переводе – «секс-шоп» (вообще-то, «магазин»). И вспомнил автора, которым зачитывался уже давно, сначала из любви, а потом и по профессии. Бруно Шульц, непонятный и странный автор, из разряда необычных, принадлежащий трем странам и нескольким культурам, он оставил, наверное, самый удивительный ми...more
Tim Pendry
Here are two remarkable collections of stories from the interwar period by the increasingly admired if politically appropriated Bruno Schulz, a Galician Jew murdered by a Nazi during the occupation.

The introduction is worth reading and it stops me having to deal here with the issue of cultural appropriation for political purposes - the sad fate of many dead East Europeans.

Poland between the wars had a rich literary and cultural life which always was part of the European mainstream.

Schulz himself...more
pg. 73: "She had never loved him, I thought, and as Father had not been rooted in any woman's heart, he could not merge with any reality and was therefore condemned to float eternally on the periphery of life, in half-real regions, on the margins of existence."

pg. 118: "As a matter of fact, there are many books. The Book is a myth in which we believe when we are young, but which we cease to take seriously as we get older."

pg. 203: "I cannot answer for my dreams."

pg. 207: "No one has ever charted...more
I rarely give up on a book, but after slogging through this one for several months -- literally FORCING myself to read it, and eventually getting to the point where I could only manage a page at a time -- I'm saying "uncle" and quitting.

The writing is amazing in many parts, very lush and reminiscent of Jorge Luis Borges or Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez -- but, ultimately, it just doesn't add up to anything.

I really wanted to love this book, and was looking forward to reading it for quite a while, so n...more
Laura Byrnes
If you could imagine an impressionistic painting created with nothing but words, then you'd have "The Street of Crocodiles". Beautifully, sensually and repetitively awash in metaphor. You may find yourself at some point asking yourself, "Just what is this book about?" I recommend you read it for the beauty of the writing. And take it slowly. If you are looking for anything resembling a plot, you will find yourself frustrated.
Jun 04, 2007 Ben rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Utter, incomprehensible beauty from a tragically ignored writer of great vision.
I was introduced to Schultz through the equally exquisite theatrical adaptation of his life and works 'The Street of Crocodiles' by Theatre de Complicite, in London. It blew me away with it's virtuoso style and breathtaking visuals, but there is something far quiter, intimate and subsequently powerful about Schultz's original text.
Adult content. I am reading this one for a Film Studies course I am currently taking. The writing is excellent and the vocabulary is "off the hook"!
Feb 29, 2008 Eoin rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Readers
Unbelievable. Totally perfect in that crazy Borges/Kafka way, but denser. Read it right now.
Jeżeli ktoś rzadko czyta może mieć trudności ze zrozumieniem tekstu.
Randolph Carter
This book is either a novel, or more likely, a collection of semi-interconnected stories, some more connected than others. Joseph, his father, and sister Adela are recurring characters. In general people react with seemingly normal responses to things only to wander into surreal Shandean digressions which may or may not take the reader eventually back to "reality." Most of the action is driven by what appears to be the characters' subconscious, for lack of any other better motivation. This may b...more
Bruno Schulz seems to get more attention for his unfortunate death and truncated career than his actual writing. This is probably because The Street of Crocodiles and Other Stories, a volume of tenuously related vignettes, encompasses the entirety of his extant output. There is little doubt that Schulz is a unique prose writer, his style creating a swirling, magic world out of the small town of his youth. Symbolism and metaphor are heavy, and in Schulz's mystical setting, the symbols themselves...more
Philip Cherny
Street of Crocodiles:
This text feels so sensually evocative, my imagination seems transported into a suspended realm, a moment where all actions seem inconsequential (epochē). I immerse myself in this other world where I feel deeply nostalgic while at the same time removed at a distance, estranged from any kind of human sentiment. It’s a temporality of dreamlike reflection, getting lost at moments such as in “Pan” or in “Cinnamon Shops,” where the space segues in such a way that I forget how it...more
David Williamson
Stories that don’t particularly go anywhere and an over usage of esoteric and philosophical words that lead to very little enlightenment, like the sorrowful moonlight dancing on the shards of broken green bottles, the shards of light dancing like a river upon the broken jagged edges sifting through the consciousness of an old drunk, grimacing at cats. Cats that return the transcendental gazes and discuss metaphysical tales with mice and other prey, in the summer nights dragging time and off putt...more
Schulz, Bruno. THE STREET OF CROCODILES and Other Stories. (this edition, 2008). ****. This was our first book club read, and starts us off with a bang. I suspect that half of the members will wonder why they joined this book club after reading this book. Schulz was a writer who was discovered late. He was killed by a Gestapo officer in Poland in 1942, and his writing was distributed among his friends and relatives. It didn’t see print, in English, until the early 1960s, although his stories had...more
This book has me so conflicted. It is the (most) complete works of Bruno Schulz, Polish writer extraordinaire. I almost want to call him an outsider artist because from what I understand, he went to school briefly for architecture and paid his bills as a schoolteacher... but I can't see how a high school education can write on this level.

His work is so poetic that you almost have to read it as poetry. I've heard him described as a modernist, a surrealist, and any number of other -ists, but I thi...more
Victoria Haf
Por fin acabé este libro! Llevo dos años intentándolo... Es muy raro, parece hecho de sueños, y los capítulos no siempre tienen continuidad, son como pequeñas historias, algunos mejores que los otros pero con excelentes descripciones, amo como Bruno Schulz describe la luz, debió ser fotógrafo además de escritor y dibujante:
“After tidying up, Adela would plunge the rooms into semidarkness by drawing down the linen blinds. All colors immediately fell an octave lower, the room filled with shadows
Jim Elkins
Some passages in "The Street of Crocodiles" are as intensely and sharply described as anything in fiction. Here is a sentence introducing the idea that some years that go on too long, and sprout extra months:[return][return]"It sometimes happens that August has passed, and yet the old thick trunk of summer continues by force of habit to produce and from its moldered wood grows those crablike weed days, sterile and stupid, added as an afterthought; stunted, empty, useless days--white days, perman...more
After reading this I couldn't figure out why there have so many plaudits for Schulz. To me, this book was a confused magic realist-mess, exerting itself breathlessly in a poor attempt to squeeze awe and fantasy from mundane, quotidian life. I thought it compared very unfavorably to Kafka and Borges. (Hell, at one point someone even turns into a cockroach.)

The edition I read combined two books, The Street of Crocodiles and Sanatorium Under the Sign of the Hourglass, both of which consist of loos...more
Even as I sit here now I am conflicted by what I read - this may be testament to Schulz's unrealized genius. The book was frustrating to read - too repetitive, too tiresome, too uneven, too much dissatisfaction with what could have been - often felt that each passage, each line, had one word too many. Was Schulz in need of a great editor to maximize his lush talent? Something lost in translation? How many times can one writer use the word azure? But I am presenting a lopsided opinion because of...more
Read the first collection, will reread it, and will read the second collection. This was an awesome book club discussion, and we got into how we read different kinds of texts, how being asked to engage differently with a book than you're used to can be both frustrating and super pleasurable, whether or not it's okay to get violent with a RealDoll, which makes me think about how I like to imagine eating my cat off a little plate, but an element that makes the fantasy function is that it doesn't h...more
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Bruno Schulz was a Polish writer, fine artist, literary critic and art teacher of Jewish descent. He was regarded as one of the great Polish-language prose stylists of the 20th century.

At a very early age, Schulz developed an interest in the arts. He studied at a gymnasium in Drohobycz from 1902 to 1910, and proceeded to study architecture at Lwów University. In 1917 he briefly studied architectu...more
More about Bruno Schulz...
The Street of Crocodiles Sanatorium Under the Sign of the Hourglass The Drawings of Bruno Schulz Letters and Drawings of Bruno Schulz Opowiadania, wybór esejów i listów

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