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The surreal, the experimental, and the forgotten

P. J.
 
The Ice Palace (Peter Owen Modern Classics)
The Ice Palace (Peter Owen Modern Classics)
"Almost unbearably sad and evocative at times."
The Street of Crocodiles and Other Stories (Penguin Classics)
The Street of Crocodiles and Other Stories (Penguin Classics)
"Dense Proustian prose, and the master (George Eliot aside) of the metaphor."
The War of the End of the World
The War of the End of the World
"Epic in scope, horrific in content. Like a Latin American War & Peace as imagined by Bosch or Goya, with added freaks."
Chronicle In Stone
Chronicle In Stone
"Kadare has written a number of wonderful novels. This odd and beguiling homage to Albania is my favourite."
Pedro Páramo (Five Star)
Pedro Páramo (Five Star)
"Have a phobia about being buried alive? Perhaps give this a miss, then. Kafka in Mexico"
Dirty Snow (New York Review Books Classics)
Dirty Snow (New York Review Books Classics)
Ferdydurke
Ferdydurke
"Childhood is absurd and grotesque, just ask Gombrowicz. The face-pulling competition made me almost soil myself laughing."
The Woman in the Dunes (Penguin Classics)
The Woman in the Dunes (Penguin Classics)
"This had a profound effect on me. I could almost feel the sand in my throat. Claustrophobic."
The Posthumous Memoirs of Bras Cubas (Library of Latin America)
The Posthumous Memoirs of Bras Cubas (Library of Latin America)
They Were Counted (Transylvanian Trilogy)
They Were Counted (Transylvanian Trilogy)
Man in the Holocene (Swiss Literature)
Man in the Holocene (Swiss Literature)
The Melancholy of Resistance
The Melancholy of Resistance
The Robber
The Robber
Auto Da Fé
Auto Da Fé
"More like being repeatedly punched in your most tender parts than a pleasurable read. Almost shockingly hateful. Being Austrian/German it also contains the obligatory evil dwarf."
Death and the Dervish (Writings from an Unbound Europe)
Death and the Dervish (Writings from an Unbound Europe)
Petersburg
Petersburg
"Where to begin? How to begin? Why to begin? Symbolist Russian masterpiece, where every character horrifically loses their mind. More frightening than a flying spider."
Jealousy (Oneworld Modern Classics)
Jealousy (Oneworld Modern Classics)
"An exhausting read, even though it is only short. Want to repeat the same scene over and over again? 'No' i hear you cry. Give it a try, this is almost a mind-shattering experience."
The Secret Agent: With an Introduction by Giles Foden (Vintage Classics)
The Secret Agent: With an Introduction by Giles Foden (Vintage Classics)
"Conrad is not forgotten, but this novel seems, to me, to be unfairly overlooked. 'The Man' (see, he does exist) wants to rouse the public out of their political apathy, with unfortunate results"
The Maimed (Dedalus European Classics)
The Maimed (Dedalus European Classics)
Under the Volcano (Penguin Modern Classics)
Under the Volcano (Penguin Modern Classics)
"Imposeebly good. Ex consul Goeffrey Firmin drinks himself to death on the Mexican day of the dead. Kind of like a Club 18-30 version of Ulysses."
Moravagine (New York Review Books Classics)
Moravagine (New York Review Books Classics)
"Apparently the title is a reference to 'death' and 'vagina' - a book called death by vagina? Now, if that doesn't make you want to read it nothing will"
The Tunnel
The Tunnel
"A man meant to be writing a book on the nazis ends up writing a long diatribe about his wife instead. He worries that she will read it, and so begins to dig a tunnel out of his room. Er, as you do."
The Tartar Steppe
The Tartar Steppe
"Anyone who has ever tutted impatiently in a queue or asked 'are we there yet?' should read this."
The Tenant
The Tenant
Voss
Voss
"Nobel winning, but criminally ignored. Arrogant German embarks on foolish exloration of the outback. Profound, moving, funny, and very very bleak."