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The modest Thomas Mann boom, begun with the recent publication (by New Directions) of his early stories, continues with this fine new English translation of the author's last great novel, first published in 1948. A work written in old age and suffused with Mann's moral despair over his country's complacent embrace of Nazism, Doctor Faustus unrelentingly details the rise and fall of Adrian Leverkhn, a gifted musician (modeled, as Mann admitted, on modernist innovator Arnold Schoenberg) who effectively sells his soul to the devil for a generation of renown as the greatest living composer. Woods's vigorous translation works brilliantly on two counts: It catches both the logic and the music of Mann's intricate mandarin sentences (if one reads closely, the rewards are great); and it gives the novel's narrator (``Adrian's intimate from his hometown'') a truly distinctive voice, making him more of an involved character than a rhetorical device. Mann's most Dostoevskyan novel should, in this splendid new version, speak more powerfully than ever to contemporary readers. -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"John E. Woods is revising our impression of Thomas Mann, masterpiece by masterpiece." The New Yorker "Doctor Faustus is Mann's deepest artistic gesture... Finely translated by John E. Woods." The New Republic "Arguably the great German novel" New York Times "Perhaps not since Thomas Mann's Doctor Faustus has a novelist conveyed so tangibly and exaltedly the mechanism and the aesthetic effect in musical performance" New York Times "The real masterpiece" New York Times --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.See all Product Description
Mann's gorgeous, rich prose cannot save this dull, plodding tale from being an ordeal to read. The same density of language which charms the reader in the beginning becomes an... Read morePublished on April 20 2004 by Peter
A theme of good and evil,a tale about a genius who has trouble dealing with himself, a story of love of music and a life of suffering, that glues one to the pages. Incredible.Published on March 20 2003 by chubchik
In this reenactment of the ancient Western myth of Faustus, Thomas Mann tells us the story of German composer Adrian Leverkuhn, a man obsessed with themes of mathematics, theology... Read morePublished on Nov. 13 2002 by Guillermo Maynez
What moved me to write my 'review' is the disturbing sometimes tone of the other commentaries.
The whole point that makes Thomas Mann writing so interesting, is its honesty... Read more
The German obsession with the legend of Faust is updated richly and memorably in what may well be Thomas Mann's greatest achievement. Read morePublished on May 10 2001 by David Scott Goen
Study the mind of a genius and the soul of a mad man. Witness the depths of depression and heights of creation with demonic infection. Read morePublished on March 13 2000 by Eilif A. Heyerdahl