Brew Hoop Book Club - Sept. 2023 - Reading Abroad

Hi folks. Doing my part to add to the nascent BHBC posts. I enjoy the posts that take books recently written and try to find a way to shoehorn a connection between the Bucks or sports in general into the themes of said book. This post is, unfortunately, not that. But I like reading, hearing what others are reading, and if there is a connection to the Bucks, great!

As I can't stop posting about, I'll be in Europe soon (I'll stfu about it after this post). To enhance the experience, I picked up Elena Ferrante's My Brilliant Friend, the first in the "Neapolitan Quartet" that has been subject to intense praise from almost every literary outlet I've seen review them. In addition, I have Nikos Kazantzakis's Freedom or Death, a novel set in late 19th Century Crete amid a Cretan revolt against Ottoman rule. By their nature, I tend to believe most literary works end up containing an essence of the place they've chosen as a backdrop -- even if a novelist doesn't make the landscape or cityscape something like a main character, the personality and culture that is imbued in the people involved shows something deeper. If you're lucky, as a foreign reader you may snatch a hint of what makes the places you're visiting special in their own way beyond the architecture.

Do you tend to do any pre-reading about the places you're visiting, or even bring books along with you that are about the area to enliven your stay? To marry the sense of the abroad as it is written with your lived experience is something of an ideal, even if you're just scratching the surface.

Shameless plug: I have my own personal blog where I'm starting to write the occasional review. It's called A New Orpheu and you can find it here. Stop by if you like!

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