Kaganos Email to friends Share on Facebook — opens in a new window or tab Kaeare on Twitter — opens in a new window or tab Share on Pinterest — opens in a new window or tab. The older boy tells him MacBeth is way too advanced for him, but he takes it anyway and falls under its spell. First the Italians, then the Greeks, then the Italians again, and finally the Nazis. I felt like I was kaxare of the family. Perhaps, as the introduction points out, there is even more said between the lines, but first just sit back and enjoy the story. It was Llukan the jailbird, with his old brown blanket slung over his right shoulder.

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I was tired last night I loved this book. Well, what I loved most was the writing style. I scarcely realized I was learning about the events occurring in Albania ! The book description here at GR is practically nonexistent so I will explain a bit. This is an ancient city near the Albanian Greek border. In Mussolini occupied Albania, but thereafter control switched several times between the Italians and the Greeks.

Finally near the end of the war and until the summer of , the Germans occupied Albania. This civil war led finally to the Communist takeover by Envor Hoxha. The city is made of stone houses, topped with slate rooves. This gray city has a strong presence in the novel. Trees and foliage, lawns and bushes are not what you find here. Such a world is far away only imagined at the markets where the peasants bring in their produce.

The city has arisen from the earlier Turkish landowning people. In the book, the city itself, has an identity! Violent times, to say the least. Culturally the city has a Muslim Turkish heritage. All of this is woven into the story. Different cultures, strange beliefs, bizarre people and shocking events — they are all part of this novel.

At the center is a young boy trying to understand it all. One might think that such a time and place would not be the setting for a book filled with humor. This book IS filled with humor and irony.

The boy is so imaginative, the words and thoughts will delight you. Words and events are misunderstood, and we who read can chuckle at the search for knowledge and the irony of the crazy world that engulfs the city Diverse themes, from magic to girls to war to Shakespeare to sexual deviants, are all present.

The author plays with words. And yet this is about war and when the tone suddenly switches you are struck by the huge contrast. Only by first laughing do you come to feel totally devastated when things go wrong. All of a sudden I realized how invested I had become in these people.

There is a pronunciation guide and an exemplary introduction written by David Bellos. I read the introduction after finishing the book. I advise doing this. Often I dislike introductions. This introduction does not do that. It adds historical fact so you better understand the story itself. It tells of how Kadare rewrote this story repetitively. It explains what version we have in our hands.

It speaks of the translator Arshi Pipa. It is very interesting, but first read the novel and let yourself be carried away by the play on words and imagination.

I absolutely adored the literary style! I was emotionally captivated by these characters. Perhaps, as the introduction points out, there is even more said between the lines, but first just sit back and enjoy the story.

Remember it is fiction. Well that is what I think. I would not consider giving this book anything but five stars. I loved it. Every bit of it. It drew a picture of a difficult time and place. First it was very amusing and then it socked me in the stomach. Here follows just one example of the humor found in this book: The last Italians left during the first week of November, four days after the evacuation of the aerodrome. For forty hours there was no government in the city.

The Greeks arrived at two in the morning. They stayed for about seventy hours and hardly anyone even saw them. The shutters stayed closed. No one went out in the street. The Greeks themselves seemed to move only at night.

At ten in the morning on Thursday the Italians came back, marching in under freezing rain. They stayed only thirty hours. Six hours later the Greeks were back. The same thing happened all over again in the second week of November. The Italians came back. This time they stayed about sixty hours. The Greeks rushed back in as soon as the Italians had gone.

They spent all day Friday and Friday night in the city, but when dawn broke on Saturday, the city awoke to find itself completely deserted. Everyone had gone. Or the Greeks? Saturday and Sunday went by. On Monday morning footsteps echoed in the street where none had been heard for several days. On either side of the street women opened their shutters gingerly and looked out.

It was Llukan the jailbird, with his old brown blanket slung over his right shoulder. In his kerchief je was carrying bread and cheese, and was apparently on his way home. The prison is closed. The doors are wide open. Not a soul around. Please read the book so you can experience yourself the imagination of the main protagonist. I absolutely adore it!!!!! I keep thinking I should stop and tell my GR friends. I think I simply must copy a bit so you get to see what I am reading.

I have to keep reading, and I cannot copy the whole book as examples of why I am loving how this author expresses himself. What I love about this book are the lines. They are funny! How can war be funny? Well, what happens is so absurd you do laugh! Some lines are funny, others conjure a picture of gloom, others the delight of women in the eyes of an adolescent boy and then there is magic too.

Read this!


Kronike ne gur, Ismail Kadare






Kronikë në gur



Kronike ne gur


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