The Island of the Day Before

The Island of the Day Before

Book - 2006
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After a violent storm in the South Pacific in the year 1643, Roberto della Griva finds himself shipwrecked-on a ship. Swept from the Amaryllis, he has managed to pull himself aboard the Daphne, anchored in the bay of a beautiful island. The ship is fully provisioned, he discovers, but the crew is missing.

As Roberto explores the different cabinets in the hold, he remembers chapters from his youth: Ferrante, his imaginary evil brother; the siege of Casale, that meaningless chess move in the Thirty Years' War in which he lost his father and his illusions; and the lessons given him on Reasons of State, fencing, the writing of love letters, and blasphemy.

In this fascinating, lyrical tale, Umberto Eco tells of a young dreamer searching for love and meaning; and of a most amazing old Jesuit who, with his clocks and maps, has plumbed the secrets of longitudes, the four moons of Jupiter, and the Flood.
Publisher: New York : Harcourt, 2006
Edition: First Harvest edition
ISBN: 9780156030373
0156030373
Branch Call Number: FIC ECO 2006
Characteristics: 513 pages ; 21 cm
Additional Contributors: Weaver, William 1923-2013

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e
erfar
Feb 17, 2016

Convoluted, imaginary story within a story within a story. Tedious; pedantic, no plot. As if the author merely wanted to show off his erudition. NOT recommended!

j
jdhmsw
Jul 17, 2012

suspend that righteous grip on reality and allow yourself to be carried away by this story teller -- he will take you on some delightful trips. and maybe have a dictionary with you and see if you can figure out which words are made up.

i don't read italian and so can't comment on the translation -- but would love to read comments from someone who can compare this version with the original...

r
rslade
Apr 12, 2012

Umberto Eco is definitely erudite, but his books are a bit short on plot. He is definitely a "novelist," exploring ideas, but once you've read one, you've pretty much read them all: they go nowhere. I suppose the protagonist of this book does go somewhere, first from his hometown to a seige, and then to an island halfway round the world (pretty much literally), but although things do happen there is not much point to them. (Then he makes his imaginary evil twin do the same.)

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