The Library Basement
Reading under ground

Readings for July 2013

In which I get some international flavor.

The Elephant Keepers' Children by Peter Høeg

I have a confession to make. I have thoroughly enjoyed 100% of the Danish novels I've read. Last year I read Carsten Jensen's We, The Drowned and loved it. That gem was discovered on the new books shelf at the local library. In this same way I found The Elephant Keepers' Children by Peter Høeg. Maybe there is a Danish literature booster amongst the staff at the library.

This delightful novel is a well-executed farce. The story follows the travails of two good Danish children of a priest and an inventor. There are a lot of good characters and some great dialogue. I laughed out loud a few times whilst reading it. What I appreciate more is that there is some thoughtful substrate beneath the humorous plot. Definitely recommended.

Periodicals

  • Harper's August 2013 - Rowan Jacobsen's article "The Homeless Herd" documents some "rogue" elephants colliding with human settlements in India. This is a great story, as it evokes the eternal struggle between man and nature. Also - Harper's: can we settle on a book reviewer? I liked having the stability of Zadie Smith for a time, but things have been a bit topsy-turvy of late...

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