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When his twin brother is killed in a car accident, Helmer is obliged to give up university to take over his brother's role on the small family farm, resigning himself to spending... Read more
When his twin brother is killed in a car accident, Helmer is obliged to give up university to take over his brother's role on the small family farm, resigning himself to spending the rest of his days "with his head under a cow." The novel begins thirty years later with Helmer moving his invalid father upstairs out of the way, so that he can redecorate the downstairs, finally making it his own. Then Riet, the woman who had once been engaged to marry Helmer's twin, appears and asks if her troubled eighteen-year-old son could come live on the farm for a while. Ostensibly a novel about the countryside, The Twin ultimately poses difficult questions about solitude and the possibility of taking life into one's own hands. It chronicles a way of life that has resisted modernity, a world culturally apart yet laden with familiar longing.
Gerbrand Bakker studied Dutch historical linguistics and worked as a subtitler for nature films before becoming a gardener. His previous books include an etymological dictionary for children and the young adult novel Perenbomen bloeien wit (Pear trees bloom white). The Twin appeared in Dutch in 2006 and was awarded the Golden Dog-Ear, a prize for the bestselling literary debut in the Netherlands. David Colmer is a writer and translator. He translates Dutch literature in a wide range of genres including literary fiction, nonfiction, children's books, and poetry. He is a two-time winner of the David Reid Poetry Translation Prize, most recently for Gerrit Achterberg's poem "The Poet as a Cow."
Yalo propels us into a skewed universe of brutal misunderstanding, of love and alienation, of self-discovery and luminous transcendence. At the center of the vortex stands Yalo, a young man drifting between worlds like a stray dog on the streets of Beirut during the Lebanese civil war. Living with his mother who "lost her face in the mirror," he falls in with a dangerous circle whose violent...
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