Sunday, December 22, 2013

Ernest Hemingway - For whom the bell tolls

Well, the title is perfect. The book on the other hand has many flaws. However reading a 1945 swedish published version was probably not the best choice to read this. First it went through censorship, all profanities being replaced by "unnammeable, profanities, unprintable" except "whore" which is funny enough to make you wonder if this is such a common word in sweden. The author also make a few mistakes in his translations but that's okay. Secondly all what is supposed to be said is spanish is written in an heavy tedious to read english with lots of "thou, thee, thist" and the like. It's annoying and distracting as if trying to picture the lack of education of the characters. Then the book is full of repetitions, heaviness, useless passages. It's not bad per se, it does provide a view of the spanish civil war from the inside, it manages to convey some of the spaniard's spirit. But it's trying too hard and fails at making it's artefices obvious. It's maybe more a book for the people who have no clue what the spanish civil war was more than anything. Clearly not a mandatory reading and I'm glad to be through with it

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