pinknantucket's Reviews > Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi

Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi by Geoff Dyer
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's review
May 27, 2010

liked it

I didn't enjoy it as much as Dyer's Lawrence book ('Out of Sheer Rage', which I snickered my way through) but still a good read. Dyer doesn't write 'plot' novels (based on the two I've read and also what he said in person himself when I went to see him talk recently so there). You kind of follow him along, seeing what he sees, thinking what he thinks. This books is in two parts - the first set in Venice, the second in Varanasi, India. Surprise! They are narrated by different characters, both are freelance journalists, both appear unhappy with their lives.

Some scenes in particular I loved - Jeff's Venice marijuana-fueled interview with an artist in Venice (not to mention the endless Bellinis and parties), Atman's stand-off with the monkey in Varanasi. The second part, in particular, really stayed in my mind after reading - Dyer's depiction of Varanasi makes me feel like I've been there.

There are some rather frank sex scenes in the first section (none at all in the second) so if you are travelling through Australian Customs in the near future you might want to check with them whether it is classified as porn. Make them read it out loud.
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message 1: by Natasha (new)

Natasha I know someone who use to work in customs and I think that they may enjoy that!

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