Saturday, April 29, 2017

"Journey Into The Past" by Stefan Zweig ****

  • Austrian author
  • Originally published in 1987
  • This novella was found in Zweig's papers after his death 
  • Review:  The manuscript of this novella was found in Zweig's belongings after his suicide.  Apparently it is partially autobiographical.  As is common with other books of Zweig's, the plot is deceptively simple.  It consists of the story  of a young man and woman who fall in love, but due to her marriage and his work they cannot be together, and the are separated on separate continents during WWI.  The inevitable reunion is thrilling, then tentative, and then sadly unlikely.  I think the primary is about all that was lost during the war, on a much deeper level than a first love.  It was about the loss of individual and national identity, the loss of lifestyle and about society's very fabric coming apart.  Zweig's prose is simple, yet emotionally evocative.  Certainly his writing improved in his later novels, but the seeds are all here!

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