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The Discovery of Heaven (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 27. Januar 2011

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The internationally-renowned author of The Assault delivers a rich mosaic of 20th-century trauma in which many themes--loyalty, friendship, family, art, fate, good and evil--suffuse a suspenseful and resplendent narrative.


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Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Eine spannende und emotionale Geschichte - auch für diejenigen, die nicht fit in Astronomie, Religion und Geschichte sind. Es zieht einen in seinen Bann wie ein Strudel. Ein Buch zum verschlingen! Leider Harry Mulischs wirklich einzig gutes Buch....
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Amazon.com: 3.8 von 5 Sternen 73 Rezensionen
6 von 7 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen A Heavenly Kaffeeklatsch 25. November 2010
Von Daniel Myers - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Verifizierter Kauf
This lengthy, meandering tome of a novel, seemingly covering every aspect under the sun, and beyond it - from radio telescopy to Bach, from Nietzsche to Einstein, from the nuances of Dutch politics from 20th Century to the nuances of ancient history - could easily become what it is NOT: a tendentious, hypercerebral bore. The reason it does not is because of a quality of the conversations regarding the ideas strewn from cover to cover that no reviewer here seems to have mentioned outright: The ironic wit of the book and of the characters therein, particularly the primary ones, Max and Onno. The book, taken as a whole, is extremely PLEASANT to read (or was for this reader), and I can't stress this pleasant, urbane tone of the tome strongly enough. Max and Onno are both self-mockingly funny as they descant upon topic after recondite topic in quite the en passant, bordering on flip, manner. This quality is what keeps one turning the pages with a grin popping up on one's face from time to time. The book is simply a treat for any cultured, half-educated reader. One doesn't feel the need to take much of the recherché notions very seriously here - unless, of course, one notion strikes a reader particularly strongly - because the characters themselves, up to and including the angels in the Prologue, Intermezzo and Epilogue sections, converse so drolly that I pictured them with winks and smirks on their faces. One reviewer has described this book condescendingly as a "ragbag" of ideas. No, it is a wonderfully rococo smorgasbord of delightfully presented intellectual treats!

And then there are those who take The Discovery of Heaven ever so seriously. Does any reader sincerely contend that this book - metaphysically speaking, which I don't like to do - has brought them any closer to some extraterrestrial heaven? Answer: Yes, there seemingly are such readers, especially amongst the "professional" reviewers, and I do have to concur that Quenten's quest, attempting to execute the "SOMNIUM QUENTI," might, at first blush, seem a tad Dan Brownish towards the end. But please heed Onno's voice in all their conversations during these sections. It resembles nothing so much as an erudite man such as Mulisch teasing and debunking a charlatan such as Brown, only putting up with him because, in this case, Quenten is his son, in name anyway.

Of course, there is a downside to a book that is purely cerebrally ludic in nature; there are no emotional depths to the work or emotionally binding characters to ensorcell the reader and transcendently move him/her. But, perhaps, if the novel has a point, this is it: As Onno puts it, "No one did anything anymore; everybody simply talked about the way something ought to be done." Doesn't this sound familiar to the modern reader?

So, a very fun, pleasant, idyllic book with which to while away (in my case) a week's time, with very important ideas no doubt which I ought to take more seriously. But not even the angels do that!
14 von 16 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Engrossing and Clever, But Overlong and Overambitious 24. Februar 2010
Von Poogy - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
The Discovery of Heaven having been pressed into my hands by a good friend, and the blurbs on the cover being remarkably glowing, I couldn't wait to dive into it. It's long, but I've enjoyed a number of very long novels.

The relationship between Onno and Max that develops during the first section pulled me in, and I enjoyed the witty repartee and intellectual jousting and theorizing. I looked forward to seeing where this relationship would take me. Certainly, there's plenty of build-up, in the form of angels hinting about the cosmic significance of their machinations through these characters--a device I didn't particularly like or feel added anything to the book's effect.

There are novels that are primarily plot-driven, others that present some very memorable characters, and some that display an unusual facility with language itself. It's nice to have all three, but I'm not sure you can have a really successful novel without having at least one element that's outstanding. I found this one to include a couple of interesting characters, a vague plot that promises more than it delivers, and little in the way of style, although some of that may have been lost in translation.

There was not enough of any of these to sustain my enthusiasm through the book's length, and I found finishing the second half a grind--not so onerous and without its attractions that I didn't finish, but it took continual effort. Once the Max/Onno relationship matures, the pace and interest slow considerably. Mulisch clearly has an active mind and is very well-read, and he led me to ponder many fascinating ideas and apparent paradoxes (he's really into paradoxes), but most of these had little to do with the story itself or the significance of it; it's as though he just stuffs into the novel every intriguing idea he ever thought about. They are primarily window dressing, made part of the personalities of the two bantering main characters, who are continually going off on intellectual tangents. These tangents are also superficial; you read them and think, "That's interesting, I'll have to mention that to my friends," and then he moves on to some other similar diversion in the course of telling the story.

Ultimately, after all of this cleverness, I was surprised to find Mulisch didn't seem to have very much to say in the story itself; although presented as a profound philosophical novel, I didn't find it any more so than, say, The Da Vinci Code. After the first several hundred pages, the plot meanders towards the conclusion for which we wait, and wait. I won't disclose the ending other than to say that I didn't feel after 730 pages that I had been shown some new insight into human nature, or the nature of the universe, etc. In fact, it seemed a bizarre and confusing cop-out, coming after so long a wind-up; a long, drawn-out story to little ultimate effect. But I'd still be interested in reading another of his novels--albeit maybe a shorter one, because Mulisch does have an interesting mind.
4 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Owen Meany goes to Drenthe 12. September 2005
Von Henry Slofstra - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
I've just finished this book this very evening, so a little distance may be needed to properly assess this novel. But I'm motivated to write a few impressions now, so here they are.
The inevitability or fated conclusion that drives the narrative of this novel reminds me very much of 'A Prayer for Owen Meany'. I'd have to say - at this moment - that this is the better of the two books, and that is very high praise indeed. I believe that Mulisch's story just flows a little better; at times I find Irving too contrived, with too much of an agenda. Perhaps Irving is a little stronger in developing nuances of character. In any case, if you liked Owen Meany, you will likely enjoy this book, and vice versa: fans of this book should give Owen Meany a try.
In some ways the ending of 'Discovery' was disappointing, in the same way that Irving can be. Both Irving and Mulisch are masterful storytellers, but there is not really that much insight from a spiritual, philosophical or existential perspective. Really more clever sophistry. One will not find here, the mimetic quality and insight of a Hardy, Tolstoy or Chekhov. Not to say that Mulisch is inferior to the canonized, just different. (And not to say he is not inferior). Still, the insight from a historical and socio-political perspective into post-modern life as it currently stands is considerable.
If you consider the novel apart from the brief explanatory metaphysical prologues, you are left with a very engaging story of 3 generations of characters trying to find some sense against the backdrop of some of the main events of the post-modern era. Mulisch vividly re-creates Cuba and Holland in the 60s and in the 80s, as well as our ongoing Holocaust hangover. Reliving these events through the lives of Mulisch's fascinating characters provides many pleasurable hours of reading. And the narrative is driven by a rapturous wonder at where the book is going, at how it will end. Instead of a "who-done-it?", it's more of a "why-is-it?".
Please don't let my reservations about the ending deter you from reading this wonderful novel. I think the book builds some grand expectations that simply can't be met at a deep level, but all the same, there are quite a few thrilling turns in the last pages of the novel.
Although generally 700 pages is much too long for a modern novel, this book is a notable exception.

Finally, a word about the reviews accusing Mulisch of misogyny. These formula attacks on various review sites are becoming as annoying as a Slammer worm; perhaps a rogue computer somewhere is assembling them. It is disingenuous, to say the least, to pass off the views and conversations of a novel's characters as either the viewpoint of the novel or of its author. Readers should be more concerned about Mulisch's slams against the province of Drenthe, "the Siberia of the Netherlands", according to Max. Perhaps unkind to Siberia also. (I was born near Drenthe in southern Groningen, and still have family there).
0 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Imaginative but hard to relate to 11. März 2016
Von Boris Goodnight - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
The characters and plot are unusual. The characters become understandable but never lovable, to me. I'm was curious about what happens next but I really could not go on caring, or have hopes or fears because the characters, their lives, and the plot, are so unlike anyone's life that I know of. Not that the characters are superficial or are less than. If anything they are more than. They are not meant to be typical but they are quite alien while still being human. The supernatural events were interesting. It was exciting to read at first, then with so little to relate to, I began to lose interest. In the Royal Tannenbaums, we have a very unusual family and an atypical plot. But I love them all and hated to see it end. In Discovery of Heaven, it has not made me think, wonder, or care. Oh well. I know this book won some kind of prize, it truly is very imaginative.
1 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen This is now the best book I've read, EVER 16. April 2002
Von Bart Louwagie - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
For a long time I kept saying that "A Man" from Oriana Fallaci was the best book I ever read. "The Disovery of Heaven" goes way beyond that and for very different qualities and reasons. The author's combination of intelligence, knowledge, wit and fantasy is simply mindblowing. You'll need some time to read it, but what a quality time at it; from the european-jewish history, over marxist and capitalistic paradoxes, astrology and theology, to devine intervention, mixed with characters that are so real and yet so far out. I was often thinking about "could one make this book into a movie?" and my answer is "one movie: no way; it would have to be a couple of movies at least to be able to translate the richness of the story". With this I do not think the book is complex or hard to read at all; I typically can not stand books that make it hard to keep track of who's who and has done what; there is none of that. I've I'd sell the book I'd give satisfaction guaranteed or money back, to book is too good to return; even after having read it all. I only regret one thing: "not having read it slower so I'd still be reading it today" Maybe I'll have to start all over. </P>
PS "A Man" IS a good book (if you can find it)
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