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Flotsam: A Novel Kindle Edition

4.1 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Length: 449 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“The world has a great writer in Erich Maria Remarque. He is a craftsman of unquestionably first rank, a man who can bend language to his will. Whether he writes of men or of inanimate nature, his touch is sensitive, firm, and sure.”—The New York Times Book Review

From the Inside Flap

FLOTSAM
Political dissidents, Jews, medical students, petty criminals. Among the thousands of displaced persons traveling the unpaved roads of Europe, there are Steiner and Kern. Both have irritated officials for outstaying their cold two-week welcome in Czechoslovakia. And so they must leave. Not that either has any place to go. Not in 1939. But when a man is led by a guard to the border of one country, he must try another one. Until he is escorted from that one too.
Living hand-to-mouth, selling shoelaces and safety pins for a few pennies, there are still pleasures to be had in such a life. Paris, for one; love for another. For amidst the heartless cruelty and cold-blooded laws of the Nazi state, there is still humanity and kindness. And there is incomparable joy in falling in love, surviving, and telling your story so it is never forgotten.

Product Details

  • File Size: 4234 KB
  • Print Length: 449 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0449912477
  • Publisher: Random House (December 17, 2013)
  • Publication Date: December 17, 2013
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00DAD26TW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #226,038 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
A detail and powerful portrait of all people who lived under the oppressive regime of Nazi Germany. The reader of the book will have a deep appreciation for the feelings of hopelessness of the oppressed under an evil and powerful government.
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I'm more used to the images and tales of concentration camp victims and exterminations. This story of lost souls forced to drift around the European continent (mostly on foot) in pre-World War II -- people denied passports or any other identification papers -- was a revelation to me.
Anyone interested in what the period between the two World Wars meant to the common German citizen should seriously consider reading this fine novel. I have not found anyone better to describe man's inhumanity to man than Erich Maria Remarque.
Who is to decide who is human detritus? Flotsam, indeed!
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Format: Paperback
Flotsam is the first of Remarque's refugee works (followed by Arch of Triumph and Shadows in Paradise). The themes he explored in The Three Comrades are here--the ill heroine, the WWI war veteran, etc. However, here the emphasis is on the absurdities that the nationless must face to survive. The work is interesting from a literary standpoint in that Remarque's writing is maturing, though he does seem to return to the same characters over and over--here, the Steiner figure is similar to Ravic in the Arch of Triumph, who, is similar to the main characters of Heaven Has No Favorites, Night in Lisbon, Shadows In Paradise and The Black Obelisk. Be that as it may, it is always a pleasure to read Remarque's world-weary wisdom of the old soldier.
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Format: Paperback
Flotsam by Erich Maria Remarque is the first of a trilogy. It tells the story of several refugees from Germany prior to World War II who are shunted back and forth across borders without any regard for their dignity, and without those countries taking any serious interest in finding a solution for this practice. The refugees struggle to maintain their dignity and start again in new countries that won't accept them or give them permission to remain or work there. The futility of their efforts, their varying abilities to adjust to this new world of rumor and chance, and the kindnesses and evil they experience along the way from their fellow human beings tell an extraordinary tale. Sadly, it does not appear that the world has changed, since these conditions continue to this day.
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By Irene on August 4, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A wonderful book from wonderful author
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