'"The Sheltering Sky" is a book about people on the edge of an alien space; somewhere where, curiously, they are never alone' - Michael Hoffman. Port and Kit Moresbury, a sophisticated American couple, are finding it more than a little difficult to live with each other. Endeavoring to escape this predicament, they set off for North Africa ...
'"The Sheltering Sky" is a book about people on the edge of an alien space; somewhere where, curiously, they are never alone' - Michael Hoffman. Port and Kit Moresbury, a sophisticated American couple, are finding it more than a little difficult to live with each other. Endeavoring to escape this predicament, they set off for North Africa intending to travel through Algeria - uncertain of exactly where they are heading, but determined to leave the modern world behind. The results of this casually taken decision are both tragic and compelling.
VG++ in VG-Price-clipped jacket. The Second Printing (stated on both the copyright page and the top of the front flap of the dustwrapper) of the author's first book. Previous owner's blindstamp to ffep. The dustwrapper (by Lustig) shows some moderate chipping but none affecting any text.
Fine in near fine jacket. 8vo, tan cloth, printed in black & aqua on the spine; d.w. (New York): New Directions, (1949). Apparently a facsimile reprint, like the first edition in all respects, except that there is no price on the dust wrapper.
Near Fine in Near Fine jacket. Fourth 'large' printing, as stated on DJ, although few copies left of any printing. Camel cloth, blue/black titles. A bit of darkening to pastedowns, else little wear. DJ designed by Emil Lustig also very good plus with tiny hole at flap fold, $2.75 price preserved on flap. 318 pp.
Very Good. 006083482X 1949 New Directions hard cover-1st edition 2nd printing-not price clipped $2.75-some wear to edge of dust jacket (now in mylar cover)-some tanning to page edge-otherwise cover fine binding strong contents clean-a very nice rare collectible-enjoy.
Very Good. B0006AS2GS 1949 New Directions hard cover-1st edition 2nd printing-not price clipped $2.75-some wear to edge of dust jacket (now in mylar cover)-some tanning to page edge-otherwise cover fine binding strong contents clean-a very nice rare collectible-enjoy.
Good in good dust jacket. 318 p. 21 cm. New Directions, New York: , 1949. 1st U.S. edition, Light olive cloth, 318 pages. Tight & square, although the spine tips & corners are bumped, the endpapers are foxed, covers soiled along edges, overall Good+. Good+ Dust Jacket soiled and lightly chipped, not price-clipped with $2.75 price still present. Hardcover. Good+, Dust Jacket Good+.
Very Good. First Edition, First Printing. In Very Good condition, lacking the dust jacket. Foxing to prelims and terminals, as well as to cloth on spine and top of the rear board. Spine lightly darkened. A nice copy.
Near Fine in Near Fine dust jacket. Mild corner bump else a clean copy of the First Edition in a clean and attractive jacket with some general mild edgewear; mild fraying at the head and heel of the spine panel and a small stain, some rubbing to the rear panel. A better-than-average example.; 1 x 7.9 x 5.2 Inches.
Very Good. No Jacket. 8vo-over 7¾"-9¾" tall. 318 pp. tan coloured cloth, very slightly grubby, top corner of front board sl. bumped, spine sl. darkened, extremities sl. rubbed/bumpedtop page edges sl. dusty, text clean, no jacket.
A tough book to follow.....but worth it... and an interesting perspective as to what really makes up a relationship.
Be prepared for what you will find.
Danny G.in Charleston,SC
May 25, 2010
This book sticks with you for a long time after you've put it back on the shelf.
Port and Kit are a bored married couple, travelling and looking to rekindle their earlier romance. They've brought their friend Tunner along, a seemingly strange choice for a romantic getaway. The strangest choice is that their getaway is to the wild deserts of North Africa - no map, no travel itinerary, no vaccinations. Even more foolishly, they trust every random stranger they meet along the way.
Of course, unpleasant things happen to them.
Sep 30, 2007
Structurally experimental adventure
As Tennessee Williams points out in the introduction, this novel is much more about atmosphere and cultural awareness than it is about character or plot. We are led to believe that the protagonist is a lonely, repressed man travelling with his ebullient wife in North Africa. However, partway through the book, his wife takes center stage. Bowles is able to articulate, through sparse language and a detailed landscape, what it means for Euro-Americans to encounter a North African culture in a post-colonial era. Rather than situate Muslims or Arabs in a "heart of darkness" atmosphere of fear, he infuses them with mystery, assuredness, and self-confidence. It's the white ex-patriots that struggle to feel genuinely, experience intimacy, and lose their self-consciousness in their escape from WWII's devastation. The brilliant title, the "sheltering sky" refers to the feeling the displaced wanderers have that the sky is a mere veil separating them from the horrid, desolate frontier of space. It functions as a fitting metaphor for the characters' alienation from the universe and, ultimately, themselves.
Sep 13, 2007
This novel owns a berth in the pantheon of great novels! Do yourself a favor and read it.
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