Every literate Indonesian should read it, so should Everyman hooked on the Island Nations's anthropology. Indonesian, more or less an artificial "spin-off" language with tracable history rooting back to no earlier than the wake of 20th Century intellectual and youth movements, is no way a language of classic. But reading this piece, as well as other works from "Mas Pram" Pramoedya A. Toer, one may feel the perseverance of the language, neatly packaged by the hands in an enduring atelier-of-mind of a lifelong political dissident.
Speaking Indonesian during the first 16 years of my short life, I'm quite convinced by the time I read my first book of his (and up until this moment), that his Indonesian is timeless; he is not in any way Indonesian-own Adam Mickiewicz. His narratives might be self-centered, but that gives the story a big plus, a detailed egoistic my-narrative-not-yours plot which counterintuitively brings about a clear perspective; the resntment towards white-supremacy, the class struggles, the condondrum of über- and untermensch, the search for common identity, the birth of nation.
No, it's not "Etonian-on-voyage" every unsophisticated Britons would expect from this book. This book is honestly written, lucidly constructed and resNo, it's not "Etonian-on-voyage" every unsophisticated Britons would expect from this book. This book is honestly written, lucidly constructed and resolutely narrated journal of a man in the search of the most vague thing ever come in his mind : something we don't even sure "what". That vagueness of Mr. Stewart's journey indeed lets the story to make up, the drama to unveil and the resin of its log to be unearthed, all by nature -- compare that to superficially written Eat Pray Love with all its cliched pastas, yoga and tropics, this book offers a genuine travel log of a man on earth. Personally, I'd be delighted to read more of such earthly journeys....more
Fun fact : from the time I finished this book on, every time we invite a vegan/some vegans (or vice versa) to a dinner/brunch, we, the non-vegan non-vFun fact : from the time I finished this book on, every time we invite a vegan/some vegans (or vice versa) to a dinner/brunch, we, the non-vegan non-vegetarian, would refer ourselves as "The Animals Eater Society". True indeed, there's always a feeling of guilt of eating a slaughtered animal on me, and Mr. Foer would just amplify that with this neatly-written argumentative book on "in-animal-ish" animal eating, touché....more
Kazuo Ishiguro loves it long-winded, incremental and polite. Maybe the fact that he's writing about a post-war British butler and his struggles to maiKazuo Ishiguro loves it long-winded, incremental and polite. Maybe the fact that he's writing about a post-war British butler and his struggles to maintain the tradition of old butler, conforming, loyal, while reaching out what he called "excellent butler" and realizing, at the end, that the new world didn't hold so much emphasis than before about what it takes to be a gear butler. The story doesn't hold me so much breath, at least in the first half of the story; Kazuo brings it slowly, emphasizes personal emotion and retrospects, up until the readers realize, at the peak, how the story is really pressing us with the flood of emotion. A real masterwork of late 80's....more