Books by Paul Vincent

VENTOUX by Bert Wagendorp
Released: May 14, 2019

"A wise, funny, eminently quotable, but woefully overplotted feel-good novel about cycling, friendship, aging, and the remedial nature of athletics."
Decades after losing a companion on Mont Ventoux, five friends reunite to make peace with the mountain—and each other—by cycling it once more. Read full book review >
SPEECHLESS by Tom Lanoye
Released: Nov. 6, 2018

"A playful, touching, and verbally extravagant memoir-novel of grief."
Nine years after its original appearance in Belgium, the most celebrated work from Flemish writer Lanoye (Fortunate Slaves, 2015, etc.) makes its dazzling North American debut. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 10, 2015

"An initially ungainly but ultimately poised consideration of war's long impact on feeling and faith."
An elderly Belgian woman takes a bittersweet look back on her war-torn youth, deliberately (and queasily) blending carnage and romance. Read full book review >
SIEGFRIED by Harry Mulisch
Released: Nov. 1, 2003

"One of the world's great writers continues his steady march toward a Nobel Prize."
An "explanation" for the evil committed by Adolf Hitler is the quarry of this searching, somewhat discursive new (2001) novel from the internationally acclaimed Dutch author. Read full book review >
Released: July 15, 2001

This taut first novel (originally published in 1990) by the Dutch author of The Virtuoso is a "Laura"-like mystery about the buried past of Magda Rezkova, a troubled Czech woman presumably murdered by her husband Robert Noort, an industrial executive and frustrated artist. De Moor skillfully moves among several past times, focusing in turn on the intense Robert, his former boyhood friend Erik (who became Magda's lover), Erik's stoical wife Nellie and their retarded adult son Gaby, as well as Magda herself (whose traumatized elusiveness dates back to her family's victimization by Nazi soldiers). The story rises to a rich thematic crescendo as the abstracted Gaby's savant-like passion for astronomy is subtly linked with Magda's strategies to escape her past—and de Moor draws it all together in the stunning final pages. A brilliant debut. Read full book review >
ON THE WATER by H.M. van den Brink
Released: July 1, 2001

"Readers may be reminded of Alan Sillitoe's 'The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Runner,' perhaps also of John Knowles's A Separate Peace. Still, On the Water is a work of real originality, and a fine introduction to a splendid new novelist."
The metaphor of rowing gathers a rich nexus of meanings in this terse, haunting novel, the first from yet another accomplished writer from the Netherlands. Read full book review >
THE PROCEDURE by Harry Mulisch
Released: July 1, 2001

"Definitely not hammock reading. This is exhilarating, mind-bending stuff by an author who probes ever deeper into the mysteries that matter most—and keeps getting better."
The riddle of creation, and the innumerable natural and man-made shocks the overweening intellect is (so to speak) heir to, are the dominant concerns in this elusive and fascinating metaphysical fiction. Read full book review >
CHEESE by Willem Elsschot
Released: April 1, 2001

"Elsschot" (1882-1960), whose real name was Alfons de Ridder, was the Dutch Italo Svevo: an advertising executive whose rueful comic novels dramatized the plight of the "little man" in a busy world with a rare combination of comedy and pathos. The protagonist here is Frans Laarmans (who appears elsewhere in Elsschot's fiction), a nondescript shipping clerk whose promotion to European agent for his Antwerp firm's Edam cheese plunges him into a nightmare of obligation and bureaucratic complexity. As Laarmans frets and panics, hundreds of wheels of Edam sit, and stink—ripening into an ingenious metaphor for the burdens imposed by their reluctant possessor's frenzied pursuit of status and security. A 1933 masterpiece, published here for the first time, and one that's enormous fun to read. Read full book review >
DUKE OF EGYPT by Margriet de Moor
Released: Jan. 1, 2001

"Once again, de Moor offers an enchantingly original novel. She's getting better with every book."
From the internationally acclaimed Dutch author (First Gray, Then White, Then Blue, p. 979, etc.), a richly imagined, subtly constructed exploration of an unusual fictional subject: Europe's gypsy populations and their adversarial relationships with settled societies. Read full book review >
THE SONG AND THE TRUTH by Helga Ruebsamen
Released: Sept. 10, 2000

"A virtuosic interweaving of myth, history, and imagination."
We've seen a number of interesting novels from the Netherlands lately, but few have been better than this engrossing saga of a Dutch Jewish family's experiences of personal upheaval in the East Indies and WWII upon returning to Holland. Read full book review >