Thursday, December 01, 2005

Seattle - Groningen / Stadler - Rawie

In his 1993 novel "The Dissolution of Nicholas Dee", author Matthew Stadler has his readers travel with the narrator from Seattle, WA to Groningen, a city in the north of the Netherlands. While the landscape spoke to me (I arrived in Seattle in 1994, and attended highschool in Groningen while living in Drenthe), I couldn't get the drift of the story.I did however led myself be carried away by the author's writing. His ability to take me along for the ride was cunning. But it wasn't until I read reviews that I understood what the story was about. Bruce Bawer does a great job in the Hudson Review of 1999.

I met Stadler in person before I knew about his writing. We both participated in a Gertrude Stein marathon at Richard Hugo House (organized by Rebecca Brown). Mart learned I was from the Netherlands and mentioned having done research in Groningen for his novel The Dissolution of Nicholas Dee. Now that I know what the book is about (thanks to Bawer) I'm going back, read it again.

On the new readers blog for lovers of literature in Groningen (city and province), I discovered a photo of Jean Pierre Rawie, whom I as a teenager recognized as a romantic and flamboyant poet, as he strode into our favorite hang-out the Vlaamsche Reus (Vlamish white rabbit) dressed in cape, a flambard on his Baudelaire hairdo.
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