Dutch author Cees Nooteboom’s latest book, “Letters to Poseidon,” is available in the US.
Letters to Poseidon
It is said that during his abortive campaign to invade Britannia, the infamous Roman emperor Caligula ordered his legions into the surf to attack Poseidon and claim seashells as trophies of war. Cees Nooteboom is considerably more thoughtful in his relationship with the god of the sea. As autumn falls each year, Nooteboom writes Poseidon a letter requesting permission to return to his home in Minorca the following spring.
Of course, it would be the height of discourtesy if Nooteboom’s letters were no more than a series of demands. So Nooteboom takes the opportunity to seek the wisdom of the trident-wielding deity, and to offer the god updates about his own life and thoughts.
At once playful and poignant, beautiful and at times slightly bizarre, this masterful exploration of humankind’s relationship with the sea uses the minutiae of everyday life to illuminate the broadest questions of human existence, all couched in the lapidary prose of one of Europe’s outstanding stylists.
About Cees Nooteboom
Cees Nooteboom was born in The Hague in 1933, and now splits his time between Amsterdam and Minorca. He is a world-renowned poet, novelist, and travel writer with countless literary awards and academic honors to his credit.
Quercus and MacLehose Press
Quercus publishes under the imprints Quercus, MacLehose Press, Quercus Children’s Books, Jo Fletcher Books, and Heron Books. The company publishes a range of high-quality commercial, literary, and translated fiction, as well as nonfiction, science fiction, fantasy, horror, young adult, and juvenile titles. Quercus is a Hachette company.
The MacLehose Press is devoted to the translation of literature and crime fiction into English, and to the publication of a very few outstanding writers in English. The Press has already broken new ground with the #1 bestselling success of the Swedish writer Stieg Larsson and with many other critically acclaimed books including translations from Italian, Spanish, Polish, Icelandic, French, and Arabic. The imprint was founded by Christopher MacLehose, who was previously Publisher of the Harvill Press for 21 years. In 2006 Christopher was given the LIBF Lifetime Achievement Award for International Publishing.