Thursday, March 17, 2005

Willem Frederik Hermans

I recently received through the mail a copy of a novel by Willem Frederik Hermans. The book, written in Dutch and published in Amsterdam in 1988, is titledEen Heilige Van De Horlogerie. Louise Brooks is pictured on the cover.

From what I have been able to find out, Hermans is a noted literary novelist, and is considered one of the three most important authors in the Netherlands in the period following the second World War. His style is described as bleak - at times existential, surreal and satirical. A Google search reveals many pages in Dutch, and only a few in English. Not being able to read Dutch, I don't know much of anything about this novel, except that Louise Brooks may have inspired a character in the novel. I have an image of another version of this book (published the previous year), and the actress is also pictured on the cover of that edition. Here is a scan of the reverse of my recently acquired softcover copy. As can be seen, Louise Brooks is mentioned in the text on the back of the book. Can anyone provide a translation of this text, or some sort of approximate meaning regarding what is stated about Brooks?

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