Excerpt from “Beloved Land”

Although the Portuguese claimed the eastern half of the island, along with Oecusse, and divided it into separate kingdoms, this declaration reflected their aspirations on a map rather than the facts on the ground. Even in the latter half of the nineteenth century, fewer than one hundred colonists lived beyond the city, and large parts of the island were uncharted. For centuries, no one seemed particularly certain even of where the island ended.

From Beloved Land: Stories, Struggles, and Secrets from Timor-Leste
by Gordon Peake

Les Immémoriaux

Les Immémoriaux (A Lapse of Memory), Victor Segalen, 1907

  • French Polynesia, #1
  • Kindle, french edition, free from amazon.com
  • Read July 2015
  • Rating: 3/5
  • Opening Line: Cette nuit là — comme tant d’autres nuits si nombreuses qu’on n’y pouvait songer sans une confusion — Térii le Récitant marchait, à pas mesurés, tout au long des parvis inviolables.
  • Recommended for: scholars and cynics (and cynical scholars)

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Death of a River Guide

Death of a River Guide, Richard Flanagan, 1994

  • Australia, #22
  • Paperback, Alibris.com, $0.99
  • Read January 2015
  • Rating: 3.5/5
  • Opening line: As I was born the umbilical cord tangled around my neck and I came into the world both arms flailing, unable to scream and thereby take in the air necessary to begin life outside of the womb, being garrotted by the very thing that had until that time succoured me and given me life.
  • Recommended for: Reading breaks between fever dreams

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