In this novel, Louis-Ferdinand Celine (Journey to the End of the Night, Death on the Installment Plan) offers us a vivid chronicle of a desperate man's frantic flight from France in the final months of World War II.
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In this novel, Louis-Ferdinand Celine (Journey to the End of the Night, Death on the Installment Plan) offers us a vivid chronicle of a desperate man's frantic flight from France in the final months of World War II. Accompanied by his wife, their cat, and an actor friend, our autobiographical narrator Ferdinand leaves Paris for Baden-Baden (a World War II hideaway for wealthy Germans), is then sent to a bombed-out Berlin, and finally leaves for Denmark in search of the gold he had stashed there prior to the war. With the Third Reich in ruins and the Allied armies on Ferdinand's heels, North combines documentary realism with hallucinatory images, capturing the chaos of war and its toll on both victim and victimizer.About the Author:
Louis-Ferdinand Celine (1894-1961) was a French writer and doctor whose novels are antiheroic visions of human suffering. Accused of collaboration with the Nazis, Celine fled France in 1944 first to Germany and then to Denmark. Condemned by default (1950) in France to one year of imprisonment and declared a national disgrace, Celine returned to France after his pardon in 1951, where he continued to write until his death. His classic books include Journey to the End of the Night, Death on the Installment Plan, London Bridge, North, Rigadoon, Conversations with Professor Y, Castle to Castle, and Normance.
Ralph Manheim (b. New York, 1907) was an American translator of German and French literature. His translating career began with a translation of Mein Kempf in which Manheim set out to reproduce Hitler's idiosyncratic, often grammatically aberrant style. In collaboration with John Willett, Manheim translated the works of Bertolt Brecht. The Pen/Ralph Manheim Medal for translation, inaugurated in his name, is a major lifetime achievement award in the field of translation. He himself won its predecessor, the PEN translation prize, in 1964. Manheim died in Cambridge in 1992. He was 85.
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