Zomervacht in The New York Times

Onlangs verscheen de Engelse vertaling van Zomervacht in de Verenigde Staten en Canada. Meteen na verschijning werd Summer brother op 7 maart zeer lovend besproken in The New York Times.

‘Robben is wonderful at drawing characters with just a few deliberate strokes. One standout description comes in a passing reference to Maurice’s mother: “In my memory, smoke came out of her mouth even when she didn’t have a cigarette between her lips. There was always something smoldering inside her.”

Most fascinating to Robben, however, are the prickly relationships between men, which oscillate between moments of tenderness and brutality before reaching a painful climax. Robben depicts men who regularly cycle between carelessness, cruelty and compassion, which makes Brian’s ultimate rank-breaking toward benevolence all the more uplifting.

Like a photographer shooting a portrait, Robben captures his subjects in “Summer Brother” in a focused close-up. It’s intimate, even claustrophobic at times, just as life must be for an isolated boy like Brian, looking with wonder to the lights on the hill.’ The New York Times (Tacey Rychter)