Night Train to Lisbon

A friend lent me a Night Train to Lisbon by Pascal Mercier, letting me know that when she had tried to read it she got stuck. ‘It is too dense and doesn’t move along fast, lots of dialogue, can’t figure out what the story is about and whose the protagonist. I just couldn’t get into it, could be the mood I’m in. I thought you might enjoy it.’ That was a couple of weeks ago. It has been far from a fast read and I’m not treating it as such. I believe each book has its own pace and the reader needs to get in tune with the energy of that book. A few pages into the book, I felt the same melancholy and energy as Heinrich Boll’s The Clown. I did an online search and learned that both books were originally written in German. A site with reviews of the book suggested that European readers probably appreciate the pace more, as well as the meditative introspection. I’m thoroughly enjoying all the ponderings, thoughts that have on occassion crossed my own mind but I have never put into words, and now I find myself pondering on the ponderings.

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