This is the fourth book Anthony Burgess has published concerning the poet Enderby. The first was a very brilliant and original portrait. The second was clever and funny but not so interesting. The third was an anticlimax – a short coda full of good parodies, in which Enderby died grossly. What are we to make of this new Enderby, revived (Mr Burgess tells his readers) by popular request? It might have been kinder not to disturb his bones.
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Perception is a weird thing. Lawrence Durrell saw Hydra as a ‘great horned toad’ but Henry Miller thought it resembled a ‘huge loaf of petrified bread’. Niko Ghika painted it as a series of neat white and orange squares.
The minimalist Fumio Sasaki 'confesses that as he began to purchase fewer consumer goods, his meals shrank in size. He decluttered and lost weight. Accumulation is not just an economic way of life but a form of embodiment too. Enlightenment is reduction.'
'The river’s desecration mirrors Colombia’s long history of violence: "for years we treated it like a sewer," says Ahmed, a survivor of a particularly brutal paramilitary massacre, "just like we treated each other".'
Patrick Wilcken on the Magdalena.