Gerard Reve

Parents Worry

The last name of the main character in Bezorgde ouders ‘Treger resembles both Reve and Egters and this is not the only similarity between his first and his latest novels. There is a similar delineation of time and action in both. Bezorgde ouders is the tragi-comic story of a single day in the life of Treger, a singer and poet from Amsterdam, who just cannot seem to produce that poem which will lead to total deliverance. His incapacity is told in exorcising mumblings where once again religion, homosexuality and the temporary easing of bouts of depression through wine play a major role.

In the end Treger decides that instead of writing songs, he should record his struggles. But he quickly rejects the idea. Why would anyone be interested in his confessions, his dipsomania, the cult of the Virgin Mary, senseless expeditions to the liquor store and visits to the zoo? Once again it is the writer Reve who triumphs over the boredom his characters fight to overcome. And the readers of De avonden will be pleased to know that the stuffed rabbit makes a comeback – as a teddy bear.

This is a tragicomic masterpiece that explores with imaginative integrity the obscene and blasphemous frontiers of our nature.

Harriet Gilbert in <em>The Listener</em>

Bezorgde ouders is an original book. May it fume and fuss: the exorcistic power of its repetitions is relentlessly magnificent.

Vrij Nederland


Gerard Reve

The most widely read book by Gerard Reve (1923-2006) remains his debut De Avonden (The Evenings, 1947), but the controversial, epistolary novels Op weg naar het einde (On My Way to the End, 1963) and Nader tot U (Nearer to Thee, 1966), with their frank discussion of homosexuality and the author’s…

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Bezorgde ouders (1988). Fiction, 319 pages.

De Bezige Bij


De Bezige Bij

Van Miereveldstraat 1
NL - 1071 DW Amsterdam
Tel: +31 20 305 98 10
Fax: +31 20 305 98 24

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