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The Magic Mountain
Thomas Mann, John E. Woods
The Hooligan's Return: A Memoir
Norman Manea, Angela Jianu
Under the Glacier - Magnus Magnusson, Halldór Laxness Here's an Icelandic writer of which I've heard nothing about, despite the fact that he won the Nobel prize for literature. I found the book by chance, the synopsis sounded interesting enough, so I began reading and... helplessly fell in love with the novel.
This is Halldór Laxness' only book translated into Romanian, but I'm anxious to read some of his other works, especially Independent People.

Under the Glacier is truly an amazing book, which made me laugh (or at least giggle), think and wonder. It is a delightful blend of fantasy and reality which immerses the reader in a mysterious, yet earthly dimension. Even now, when I think of it, the magical world of the parish by the glacier is still vivid in my mind and prolongs its fascination upon me.

The way the dialogues are presented is a little bit strange: instead of the usual lines, there are the names of the interlocutors. It was a bit distressing at first, but this annoying fact was gradually forgotten since the dialogue became absurd anyway, yet so savory and funny that I could no longer find it the least fault.

The writing is full of humor (I found myself laughing many times) and the absurd situations that emerge are extremely delicious. The blending of reality with fantasy is in the perfect dose for me - at the end I was left in a state of reverie, wondering how much of what had happened was real. Some facts are confirmed, others are left unexplained, but this doesn't diminish the magic atmosphere of this forgotten place at the end of the world, governed by the glacier and the sea birds and populated by a bunch of more or less bizarre people.

Iceland through the lens of photographer Ragnar Axelsson

The old man may well be the priest from the parish near the glacier (photographer: Ragnar Axelsson)