An original approach – In Europe: Travels Through the Twentieth Century

by Geert Mak

This 876 page book is an ambitious attempt to meditate on the state of Europe on the cusp of the new millennium. Mak travelled through out European cities like Amsterdam, Vienna, Dunkirk etc and narrates on a particular historical event associated with that city in the 20th century.

The result is an ambitious book. The theme of the book is intriguing. But this book, translated from its original Dutch to English, is a slow burner. I find myself struggling to come to grip with it. Having first read it in 2011 but not to completion, and now aiming to finish it I think the difficulty to a complete enjoyment is the sketchy narrative due to the number of cities covered. One reads a city and wishes that the story is developed more. As a result one moved to the next city half sated only.

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