Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Tartar Steppe Paperback – 1 Jan 1985

4.3 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
£0.48
Paperback, 1 Jan 1985
£60.73 £4.55
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
click to open popover

Special Offers and Product Promotions

Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.




Product details

  • Paperback: 214 pages
  • Publisher: Littlehampton Book Services Ltd (1 Jan. 1985)
  • ISBN-10: 0856355763
  • ISBN-13: 978-0856355769
  • Product Dimensions: 19.8 x 13.2 x 1.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 3,131,685 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"With obvious affinities to Kafka's The Castle, The Tartar Steppe is a serener and more immediately rewarding book." (The Times)

"It is not often that a masterpiece falls into one's hands. But The Tartar Steppe is undoubtedly a masterpiece, a sublime book and Buzzati a master of the written word." (John Keegan Sunday Times)

"A beautiful, masterly novel that shimmers like a mirage, bringing into sharp focus the rise and fall of our ambitions and the pitiless erosion of time. It is the story of one Giovanni Drogo - yet how many of us will be stricken to recognise something of ourselves in him?" (Yann Martel)

"The Tartar Steppe is a nightmare, a comedy of errors, a beautiful and anguished fable, a call to resistance against folly, the inspired assurance that one last act may justify our lifelong struggle to remain human." (Alberto Manguel)

"There are names that the coming generations will not resign themselves to forget. Surely one of them is that of Dino Buzzati." (Jose Luis Borges)

"A strange and haunting novel, an eccentric classic." (J.M. Coetzee)

"Sober and luminous." (Yann Martel) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

From the Back Cover

"It is not often that a masterpiece falls into one's hands. But The Tartar Steppe is undoubtedly a masterpiece, a sublime book and Buzzati a master of the written word."
John Keegan, Sunday Times

Written in 1938 as the world waited for war, and internationally acclaimed since its publication, The Tartar Steppe is a provocative and frightening tale of hope, longing and the terrible sorcery of dreams and desires.

'A beautiful, masterly novel that shimmers like a mirage, bringing into sharp focus the rise and fall of our ambitions and the pitiless erosion of time. It is the story of one Giovanni Drogo - yet how many of us will be stricken to recognise something of ourselves in him?' Yann Martel

'The Tartar Steppe is a nightmare, a comedy of errors, a beautiful and anguished fable, a call to resistance against folly, the inspired assurance that one last act may justify our lifelong struggle to remain human.' Alberto Manguel

'There are names that the coming generations will not resign themselves to forget. Surely one of them is that of Dino Buzzati.' Jose Luis Borges

Cover design by Tim Byrne
Cover image (c) Adam Woolfitt/CORBIS
CANON#GATE

www.canongate.net
£7.99
ISBN 978 1 84195

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

See all Product Description

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
You read it and you will see that "Giovanni Drogo" is you. The story written by Buzzati is terribly true: the life of our main character in the fortress is a metaphora of our life. Drogo is waiting for a climax during his whole life, something that may give a meaning to his life and to his efforts. A life sacrificed to his carreer. People in the fortress are cast away from society waiting for a reward, they are like a community inside a prison where someone wants to escape and someone has given up any hope and feel unfit for the actual world. Nothing is happening, nothing will happen. When something that Drogo was waiting for his whole life is arriving, it' too late and his attention is now focusing on his life that is about to end. This book wakes you up and makes you think that maybe you are in the fortress waiting for something.Maybe you should get out before it is too late. This book will definitively give you a shake.
Comment 14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I can't believe no one's reviewed this book yet. I came across it as a result of 1001 Books To Read Before You Die, and though I'd never heard of it before, it definitely deserves to be in that list (or even 10 Books To Read Before You Die). It's haunting, sad, melancholic and, if you find yourself stuck in a rut, it might make you rethink your situation. The story is based around a young soldier assigned to a remote fortress whose garrison is perpetually waiting, waiting and hoping for an attack by the enemy, whoever they are, from across the desert they have to watch. If that sounds like a boring idea for a book, it honestly isn't. It's absolutely beautiful. Buy it.
Comment 14 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Waiting for Godot in the desert of the Tatars. Officer Giovanni Drogo is assigned to Fort Bastiani, a frontier post in front of the steppe in which the Tatars live (the book is a bit iffy geographically, no doubt deliberately, as it suggests an Italian fort in what seems like Central Asia). He doesn't like the place right from the beginning, and hopes he would be out of it in four months, but he ends up serving (SPOILER AHEAD) thirty years. In which absolutely nothing happens, and in which he sacrifices the possibility of having a family or a meaningful career. And when he is about to retire, the Tatars (or whomever the invaders are) really attack, he is considered too ill and old to fight, so he is shipped immediately from the front. A great book (though perhaps a bit too long) that would be considered existentialist today, even if author Buzzati didn't suscribe to that movement. Note: Buzzati wrote some other great books, including the great fantasy book The Mystery of the Old Forest, which I believe has not been translated into English.
Comment 7 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
Sometimes described as an indictment of military life and thought, this book touches on far more. It somehow reaches into ones innermost mind, to put a precise finger on the futility of ones existence, yet also on the inevitibality of our destiny. I have read thousands of books in my time, but never one that made me so sad for my own life. The setting for this powerful book - the lonely Fort Bastiani, in some unknown place and time - is superbly painted, and its characters in perfect keeping with it. A book that deserves to be more well known, it would stand very favourable comparison with many contemporary novels.
Comment 18 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
There is a painting - Malevich's Complexe Presentiment. This is the painting of Buzzati's book. This is a book when nothing happens - time stands still, or rather time is simply a single interval between the central character's arrival at the fort and his departure at the end. This interval is filled with the endless repetition of military rituals the only rationale for which is some ill-defined threat from the north, from across the featureless steppe that lies that way .
Nothing happens, every day is groundhog day, the world is bare and featureless, but it is saturated with latent, ill-defined significance; a significance of which we the reader have a presentiment - a complex presentiment.
Initially, our main character and we the readers, find the fort simply cold, uncomfortable and unwelcoming. But the rituals, the endless staring, into nothingness, and the waiting must be for something; something that our endlessly straining senses have only a presentiment but which gives meaning to our existence, or would give meaning if only this something would materialise for us. We produce nothing, our relationships are strictly governed by and frozen within the strict, military protocols of the fort - there is no development, save that of the slow, insidious physical aging and decay of our bodies.
And, eventually, our main character, and some of us, are overwhelmed by this presentiment and it becomes our life's mainspring - something that ritual and organisation gave rise to takes on a life of its own and, for our main character something that he is prepared to die for.

For those interested in seeing Malevich's painting, it is on the cover of the Harvill paperback edition of Platonov's novel - `Soul'. This book is indeed about the steppe; the central asian steppe. But it is very different from Buzzati's book.
Comment 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A soldier waiting in a fort for his moment of glory in anticipation of meeting his enemy in the battlefield.
Waiting, waiting and waiting....... till you are almost about to give up the book out of sheer boredom, but you still read on hoping for something substantial to happen, but finally end it feeling totally dispirited. And then the book haunts you for a long time .... and that is where I feel the marvel of this book is.

In a world full of books that make you feel good by talking about achievement, success, greatness, and glory here is one book that quite beautifully takes you into a completely different direction and its also not really about a grief stricken tragedy or dramatic anticlimax. This book is really about Vanity. The book really leaves you with a deep haunting feeling about life's futility.

A friend recommended this book and my first feeling was... what crap !! But this is a real masterpiece and I really would recommend it.
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews


Look for similar items by category


Feedback