Europe, Europe, Peeters

Sometimes by accident you read books that ‘fit together’. I had lent Tony Judt’s history of Europe after the war from the public library – I’ve been wanting to read a good history of twentienth century Europe for some time, and this seems to be the book to read now. I’ve dug into the first few chapters – they give a good impression of the chaos of Europe after the war, and Judt manages to give the reader a good insight in the situation as it was then, for the people who had to make the political decisions.

And then ‘the new Koen Peeters’ came out: Grote Europese Roman (Great European Novel), and being a ‘fan’ of Koen Peeters ever since I read Bezoek onze kelders en Conversaties met K. I immediately bought it, read it, finished it yesterday. I love Peeters tone, his really, really fine irony in how he writes on all the contemporary things from the world of marketing, without ever making it sound ridiculous. Although it is ridiculous, but also not, or as ridiculous as life is. (Can anybody please write an essay on Peeters’ tone – I’d love to read that…) It’s a lovestory too, it’s about giving, it’s about Europe as a myth – Peeters treats Europe here in the same way as he treated the subject of Belgium and of Brussels in his other novels. And of course there’s a character whose name is Marchand.

‘Het perenblog’ has copied the intro of the novel:

He has some more “Peeters-stuff” online:

For those of you who don’t read Dutch, an early Peeters short story was translated and published in the Flanders-issue of the Review of Contemporary Fiction from, what, 13 years ago:

blogging,en,reading matter | April 20, 2007 | 23:45 | Comments Off on Europe, Europe, Peeters |


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