False Dichotomies

Archive for January 9th, 2013

My Favourite Reads of 2012

1.      Broken April (Ismail Kadare) – For its evocation of the bleak and yet principled of world of the Kanun, and its descriptions of the landscapes of northern Albania.

“Just as he had done many times before, Gjorg brought the rifle to his shoulder and took aim at the man’s head. For a moment the head seemed to resist him, trying to elude his sights, and at the last instant he even thought he saw an ironic smile on the man’s face. Six months before, the same thing had happened, and so as not to disfigure that face (who can say whence that touch of pity came at the last moment?) he had lowered the front sight of his weapon and wounded his enemy in the neck.

The man came closer. Please not a wound this time, Gjorg said to himself in a kind of prayer. His family had had great trouble paying the fine for the first wound, and a second fine would ruin them. But there was no penalty for death.” Read more