søndag den 4. september 2016

Deception: Tales of Intrigue and Lies af Roald Dahl



Deception: Tales of Intrigue and Lies af Roald Dahl. Penguin Books, 2016. 3/6


Deception er blot ét ud af i alt fire bind omhandlende den mørkere side af menneskets natur. Bindene består af noveller, som er udvalgt og arrangeret under titlerne Deception, Madness, Lust og Cruelty. 

Why do we lie? Why do we deceive those we love most? What do we fear revealing? 

Disse tre spørgsmål pryder bogens bagside, og det var disse spørgsmål, der vækkede min interesse. De i alt ti noveller kredser om følelser som grådighed, vrede, forræderi og hævntørst, og der er ingen garanti for, at "skurken" får som fortjent. Det, der gør novellerne særprægede er blandt andet, at karakteren med alle disse voldsomme følelser stadig er menneskelig. I "The Mildenhall Treasure" bliver den grådige snydepels så blændet af skønhed over det, der skulle gøre ham rig, at han ikke nænner at skille sig af med det, hvilket forekommer underligt forvirrende for hans karakter. Selvom han stadig er lige så grisk og ubehagelig som i novellens begyndelse, fatter man måske alligevel en form for dyb, menneskelig sympati for dette væsen, som på ingen måde var forberedt på at blive bedraget af sine egne følelser.

I novellesamlinger vil der altid være noveller som brænder sig fast og andre, som forsvinder ud af hukommelsen som vand mellem fingrene. I Deception er det cirka ligeligt fordelt. Nogle af novellerne var geniale, især var jeg glad for "The Umbrella Man", "Lamb to the Slaughter" og "Mr Botibol", mens flere af de andre ikke formåede at leve op til mine forventninger om det dunkle bedrageri, som bogens omslag lover. Ikke desto mindre har jeg stadig lyst til at erhverve mig et eller flere af de andre fire bind, for det skumle mørke, som alle mennesker gemmer et sted i sig, gløder alligevel i novellerne og pirrer  mit behov for at synke dybere ned i det. 




ENGLISH BELOW
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Deception is just one out of four books about the darker side of human nature. Each work contains ten short stories, arranged in the categories and titles Deception, Madness, Lust and Cruelty.

Why do we lie? Why do we deceive those we love most? What do we fear revealing? 

These three questions are written on the book's back cover, and it was those that caught my interest. The ten short stories all revolve around emotions such as greed, anger, betrayal and revenge, and there is no guarantee that the "bad guy" gets as he deserves. In fact, I think that is what makes these short stories so very special: the characters - flaws and all - are still portrayed as human beings. In "The Mildenhall Treasure" the greedy trickster is blinded by the beauty of a treasure that was supposed to make him rich and so he consequently keeps the treasure for himself without benefitting from it. It seems confusing to his character, and even though he is still just as greedy as in the beginning of the story, you still feel some sort of deep sympathy for this man who - in no way - was prepared to be deceived by his own emotions. 

As in all short story collections there will be stories that shine and others that doesn't. In Deception it's pretty much fifty/fifty. Some of the stories are absolutely brilliant - I especially liked "The Umbrella Man", "Lamb to the Slaughter" and "Mr Botibol", while others didn't live up to my exceptions of the dark deception, the book cover promised. I do, however, still want to go out and get one more of these four works, because the darkness still glows in the stories and it intrigues my curiosity and makes me want to sink even deeper down into it all. 

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