peter hess

These mountains proclaim a message that is easy to understand when you have seen their steep walls and layers upon layers of rock, twisted, cracked, filled with gaping wounds. ‘We have suffered most brutally,’ they announce, 'and we are suffering still.’ But they say it proudly, sternly, and with clenched teeth, like ancient, indomitable warriors.
—  Hermann Hesse, Peter Camenzind
10

Royal Birthdays for today, June 29th:

Petronilla, Queen of Aragon, 1173

Murad I, Ottoman Sultan, 1326

John II, King of Aragon, 1398

Beatrice d'Este, Duchess of Milan, 1475

Maria of Aragon, Queen of Portugal, 1482

Christine of Hesse, Duchess of Holstein-Gottorp, 1543

Go-Mizunoo, Emperor of Japan, 1596

Peter I, King of Serbia, 1844

Bernhard, Prince Consort of the Netherlands, 1911

Jaber III, Emir of Kuwait, 1926

I’ll start off my review by saying that this is for the Advanced Reader copy I received, and I fully intend to read the official copy in July.

I waited on pins and needles since I first heard whisperings of this book. I was intrigued and excited that, yes, Amelia would be gracing us one final time. And then suddenly, she was here, in the rough stage, maybe, but here nonetheless. I vowed to read slowly, and slowly I did.

Here’s a confession. When was in the first few chapters, and even at times near the end, I experienced what I can only describe as psychological block. I felt as though there was a strange barrier between me and the characters. I can only assume this is because another author was attached to the writing. I think knowing this had me so worried everything would be different, that I couldn’t settle at first. Maybe reading so slowly exacerbated this feeling, or maybe in the long-run, being able to reflect on the contents of each chapter helped me recognize the characters for who they’ve always been.

Ms. Hess did not disappoint me. I eventually was able to see past the fact that this wasn’t 100% MPM, and fell into the story with pleasure. Amelia and Emerson were FANTASTIC. I was laughing often at their banter with each other and other characters, as I followed the fantastical mystery along, fully enjoying how so very Amelia Peabody it was. So many assassins, so little time.

AND SETHOS. GUYS, SETHOS WAS A DREAM. All the crazy disguises and appearances had me in stitches. I think that perhaps he won the day with this book. The sass was strong as ever, and his interactions with Ramses were amazing.

I think my only issue with it was that Ramses and David felt a little off to me at times. I think this was mostly due to them saying things occasionally that didn’t strike me as quite Them. And I was sad at the lack of Nefret, and a little surprised at the lack of interaction she had with Ramses. Now, obviously, I understand that they probably can’t even stand to look at each other what with Falcon being the previous book in the timeline, but I was hoping for something verbal to illustrate the stress between them. Mostly, we get the idea through Amelia’s observations of the pair. Perhaps some of these little things will be altered in the official copy, since I know some changes were definitely made.

One of my favorite things about this book were all the little Easter eggs thrown in, which the Reader will certainly recognize when he or she comes across them. They’ll make you smile very hard!!!

As all of you who have read this Amelia and all the others know the feeling, suddenly I hit the last chapter. I couldn’t really believe this was it, despite the July release, and I had to mentally prepare myself. In the words of JK Rowling, all was well. The ending showcases Amelia in all her vivacious glory, and I couldn’t have been happier with it. The fact that Painted Queen takes place primarily in Amarna seems to me a wonderful way to bookend a series that has been so much to me these past few years, and I give my thanks to MPM, Joan Hess, and Salima Ikram for their hard work in giving us this final, wonderful Peabody adventure.

The diabolical thing about melancholy is not that it makes you ill but that it makes you conceited and shortsighted; yes, almost arrogant. You lapse into bad taste, thinking of yourself as Heine’s Atlas, whose shoulders support all the world’s puzzles and agonies, as if thousands, lost in the same maze, did not endure the same agonies.
—  Hermann Hesse, Peter Camenzind
The diabolical thing about melancholy is not that it makes you ill but that it makes you conceited and shortsighted; yes almost arrogant. You lapse into bad taste, thinking of yourself as Heine’s Atlas, whose shoulders support all the world’s puzzles and agonies, as if thousands, lost in the same maze, did not endure the same agonies.
—  Hermann Hesse, from ‘Peter Camenzind’

“İnsanı doğadan en çok ayıran şeyin, yalandan oluşan ve onu sarıp koruyan kaygan bir şey jelatin tabakası olduğunu görüyor ve şaşırıyordum. Çok geçmeden bütün tanıdığım kişilerde aynı durumu izlemiştim, hepsi de hiçbir karanlık yanı olmayan belli bir kişi gibi davranmaya zorlanıyor ama hiçbiri de kendi kendisini bütün derinliğiyle tanımıyordu.
İçimde garip duygularla kendimde de aynı durumun varlığını saptamıştım. Böyle olunca, insanların içlerindeki özü araştırıp bulma çabalarına son verdim. İnsanların büyük çoğunluğunda jelatin kabuk, özden daha önemliydi. Nereye yönelsem, bu kabukla karşılaşıyordum, hatta çocuklarda bile rastlıyordum bu kabuğa; oldukları gibi, içgüdüsel şekilde davranmayı bırakıp her zaman bilerek ya da bilmeyerek belli bir rolü taklit ediyorlardı.”

Hermann Hesse - Peter Camenzind

O mostratemi una cosa al mondo che sia più bella delle nuvole! […] Si librano fra il cielo di Dio e la povera terra come belle similitudini dell'umana nostalgia, appartenenti all'uno e all'altra, sogni della terra, nei quali la loro anima contaminata si stringe al cielo puro. Sono l'eterno simbolo del viaggiare, della ricerca, del desiderio e della nostalgia. E come pendono pavide, desiderose e caparbie fra cielo e terra, così le anime umane pendono pavide, desiderose e caparbie fra il tempo e l'eternità.
Oh, le nuvole belle, sospese, instancabili! Ero fanciullo, ignorante, e le amavo, le guardavo e non sapevo che anch'io sarei passato come una nuvola attraverso la vita, migrando forestiero dappertutto e sospeso fra il tempo è l'eternità.
—  Hermann Hesse, Peter Camenzind
The diabolical thing about melancholy is not that it makes you ill but that it makes you conceited and shortsighted; yes almost arrogant. You lapse into bad taste, thinking of yourself as Heine’s Atlas, whose shoulders support all the world’s puzzles and agonies, as if thousands, lost in the same maze, did not endure the same agonies.
—  Hermann Hesse, Peter Camenzind