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Pigeon Post Paperback – Dec 1 2008
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accomplished and delirious comic novel' - James Womack, Times Literary Supplement
About the Author
Dumitru Tsepeneag is one of the most innovative Romanian writers of the second half of the twentieth century. In 1975, while he was in France, his citizenship was revoked by Ceau?escu, and he was forced into exile. In the 1980s, he started to write in French. He returned to his native language after the Ceau?escu regime ended, but continues to write in his adopted language as well.
Jane Kuntz has translated Everyday Life and The Power of Flies by Lydie Salvayre, Hotel Crystal by Olivier Rolin, Pigeon Post by Dumitru Tsepeneag, and Hoppla! 1 2 3 and Making a Novel by Gerard Gavarry, all of which are available from Dalkey Archive Press.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Slowly, out of the tangle of seemingly unrelated fragments, several cohesive story lines emerge, but they are never fully explored. Nor does Pigeon Post offer much in the way of thematic development (in that same interview, Tsepeneag admits to no more than "the shadow of a theme"). Early in the novel, in a passage where Ed describes his writing project, Tsepeneag signals what kind of reader he's hoping to reach:
"When all's said and done, I'm piecing together a puzzle that doesn't exist. In the insane hope that when I'm through, I'll manage to put forward a more or less consistent story. I'm counting a little on the reader here, on the kind that's capable of hanging in there to the end, or remaining active and alert like a detective in a dentist's waiting room."
Pigeon Post is frustrating and unsatisfying on many levels, mostly those related to our desire to read a good tale in an accessible form. Viewed as an experiment in structure and identity, however, this novel is a deliciously complex subversion of our expectations, right up to the elegant twist at the very end.