Thursday, February 21, 2008

Johanna Spaey: Dood van een soldaat

I just finished reading this quirky novel, and in spite of the fact that it has not been translated into English, I wanted to mention it. I picked it up at our library which had a display of books by local writers. Johanna Spaey is a native of Leuven and born the same year as myself. The story takes place around Leuven in 1919 and follows a single female doctor in a small village who, together with the local "veldwachter" (rural police officer) is investigating the murder of a soldier, as well as trying to reconnect with her brother and boyfriend, who both returned from the war as broken men. It's part love story, part thriller, part detective novel, part feminist tract...

I wish it was translated into English: I'd love to pass it on to my mother because about every other chapter the doctor character is eating some kind of cake, pie or pastry, which I know she would get a kick out of! The story is a bit hectic and is like one of those plays where people are constantly going in and out of the doors on the stage - from one house to the next, back and forth...bit by bit the pieces of the puzzle fall into place.

For more information on the author and her book, check out this website which promotes Dutch literature: http://www.nlpvf.nl/basic/auteur1.php?Author_ID=352

My husband just finished reading this novel and he actually liked it better than I did but found the ending confusing. And he is a native Dutch speaker...hmmm.

4 comments:

Cindy said...

Sounds like a great story. I wish I could read it.

Jenny said...

Wish I could read it too!

Cherry said...

Denk je dat het het waard is om te lezen, het boek?
We moeten een boek kiezen voor Nederlands, een thriller.
Ik ben 16, te moeilijk???

Amy said...

Dag Cherry,
Ja, ik vond het een goed boek, mijn man ook...er zijn wel wat "volwassen themas" in het boek maar ik denk voor een doorsnee 16 jarige dat dat niet zo schokkend zal zijn. Het is ook geen echt moeilijk boek. Natuurlijk, ken ik jou ook niet, dus misschien kan je het eens lenen van de bib en zien of het je aanspreekt. Veel succes!