Monday, 12 September 2016


The Bells in their silence is a book about the travels through Germany by Michael   Gorra.  He offers his own traveller’s tale of Germany.   It is sad to note that one of the review’s state – “Nobody writes travelogues about Germany.” “The journey of thousand miles must begin with a single step.”-Lao Tsu. That’s what   Michael Gorra did.   The title of the book “The bells in their silence” is an antithesis in the figure of speech.  The book comprises of 7 chapters apart from a preface – The wanderer above the sea of fog. Michael highlights all the information he got from the library giving needed references about the authors and their works.  It also includes the 17th century traveller Fynes Moryson.  The author was successful in moulding this book more than a travel guide.
The special feature of this book is the quotes of ancient scholars like Goethe and Schiller. The author gives a wide description of many landmarks in the state.  The monuments and statues of Goethe, Schiller, Karl august and Marcus aurelius add pride to the place.  The rulers of Germany and other historical details sum up to provide a clear picture of Germany in Ancient times. The impact of cold war and “The Wall” in Germany, the Nazi rulers, World- wars all made Germany- a non-visitors destination writes Cynthia Ozick .Michael advances from writers to artists.  He takes us to a trip to Museums   and German writer Fontane’ s Architectural plan for Berlin.  He familiarises us with Facsimiles of the city maps from 1902.  Usage of “metaphor’ and the word “peculiar’’ is explained in this book.  Michael Gorra is obviously a   avid reader and a big proof comes as a package of bibliography.  “The Bells in their silence” sounds great.   Kudos to both Gorra and Germany
*BUddenbrooks was the first German novel read by Michael gorra.
*In page 118 of this book “The true charm of pedestrianism does not lie in the walking…… but in the talking.  The walking is good to time the movement of the tongue by.” Twain himself puts its better.
*Details of the Germany of the holy- Roman Empire in page 67.
*Mark Twain – A Tramp Aboard in page 33.
*The structural details of Germany like parks, bridges, absent palaces, gardens, flats and temples are in page 61.

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