The Search for Heinrich Schlögel

The Search for Heinrich Schlögel

A Novel

Book - 2014
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"Martha Baillie's hypnotic novel follows Heinrich Schlögel from Germany to Canada, where he sets out on a two-week hike into the isolated interior of Baffin Island. His journey quickly becomes surreal; he experiences strange encounters and inexplicable visions as shards of Arctic history emerge from the shifting landscape. When he returns from his hike, he discovers that, though he has not aged, thirty years have passed. Narrated by an unnamed archivist who is attempting to piece together the truth of Heinrich's life, The Search for Heinrich Schlögel dances between reality and dream, asking us to consider not only our role in imagining the future into existence but also the consequences of our past choices. "-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Portland, OR : Tin House Books, 2014
Edition: First U.S. edition
ISBN: 9781935639909
Branch Call Number: F Baill-M
Characteristics: 351 pages ; 20 cm


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May 06, 2018

Each of Martha Baillie's books is an entirely new reading experience. What they all have in common is outstandingly literate, evocative, insightful writing and this one surpasses all the others I've read so far. Many passages were so spectacular that I found myself going back to re-read them several times, just to marinate in the unexpected leaps of language Baillie conjures up to evoke a character or a situation. Although this is a book of pure fiction, she employs a creative trick to make everything compellingly real: by means of footnotes, she inserts herself into the narrative as a researcher attempting to unravel Heinrich's strange story.
The story is greatly enriched by local color, whether the setting is a small town in Germany, downtown Toronto or especially when depicting the day-to-day life of a far north town (Pangnirtung) complete with the unique attitudes and wry humor that characterizes the Inuit.
Brilliant! A book to be owned and re-visited.


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