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Frank Martinus Arion
Curaçao 17 Dec. 1936 • Antillean-Dutch poet-novelist




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Frank Martinus Arion was born in Curaçao in 1936 as Frank Efraim Martinus. He came to Holland in 1955 to study Dutch literature and returned to Curaçao in 1981. Arion now heads the Curaçao Language Institute, which promotes the use and recognition of Papiamento, a pidgin language of the Antilles.
Dubbelspel ('Double Play', 1973), Afscheid van de koningin ('Farewell to the Queen', 1975) and Nobele wilden ('Noble Savages', 1979) are Arion’s novels to date. In 1995 he made a literary comeback with the new novel De laatste vrijheid ('The Final Freedom').
bookweb  
ON FRANK MARTINUS ARION'S BOOKSHELF

The End of the Affair
Graham Greene, 1951
Novel about adultery which Arion says influenced him more than any other book, because of all the surprising plot-twists.

Miguel Street
V.S. Naipaul, 1959
Life in Trinidad is described through the eyes of a 'street rab' in Miguel Street. The happy-go-lucky community abounds in eccentric characters. See also: A House for Mr Biswas.

A House for Mr Biswas
V.S. Naipaul, 1961
A journalist in Trinidad struggles to break free from his Hindu inlaws. See also: Miguel Street.

Winner Take Nothing
Ernest Hemingway, 1933
Fourteen stories that focus on the trying relationship between macho-men and courageous women. See also: Men Without Women.


Men Without Women
Ernest Hemingway, 1927
Hemingway's men are bullfighters and boxers, hired hands and hard drinkers, gangsters and gunmen. Each of their stories deals with masculine toughness unsoftened by woman's hand. See also: Winner Take Nothing.

My Sister, the Negro
Cola Debrot, 1935
An Antillean man discovers that his childhood sweetheart is his father's illegitimate daughter...

One Hundred Years of Solitude
Gabriel García Márquez, 1967
This magical realist novel tells the history of the Buendías family, the founders of Macondo, a remote South American settlement. In the world of the novel there is a Spanish galleon beached in the jungle, a flying carpet, and an iguana in a woman's womb.

Weekend Pilgrimage
Tip Marugg, 1957
A solitary drinker on Curaçao goes through various stages of mind expansion and 'mind constriction'.

Rock of Offense
Boeli van Leeuwen, 1959
The biography of a young man from Curaçao, reconstructed from papers found after his death as a result of diving for treasure at the bottom of a Venezuelan river.

Palace of the Peacock
Wilson Harris, 1960
Part I of The Guyana Quartet, experimental prose by British Guiana-born Wilson Harris.

Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands
Jorge Amado, 1966
An attractive widow in a ménage à trois with a boring apothecary and her dead husband.

BOOKS BY FRANK MARTINUS ARION:

Double Play: The Story of an Amazing World Record
1973
A politically charged novel about a memorable game of dominoes on colonial Curaçao lays bare a mozaic of adultery and machination.
WHAT TO READ AFTER DOUBLE PLAY: THE STORY OF AN AMAZING WORLD RECORD?

BRAVE WOMEN AND MACHO MEN
Dr No
Ian Fleming, 1958
James Bond fights mad scientist in Jamaica.

Breath, Eyes, Memory
Edwidge Danticat, 1994
Three generations of women in Haiti and New York.

[De koningin van Paramaribo]
Clark Accord, 1999
The story of Maxi Linder, whore and philanthropist.

CARIBBEAN, POSTCOLONIAL, AND POLITICAL
In the Castle of My Skin
George Lamming, 1953
A man grows up politically aware in Barbados.

[Atman]
Leo Ferrier, 1968
Psychological novel about young Creoles and Hindustanis growing up in Surinam.

Texaco
Patrick Chamoiseau, 1992
Historical epic about the painful history of Martinique.

[Was getekend]
Astrid Roemer, 1998
Part III of a trilogy about the relationship between The Netherlands and Surinam.

OTHER CARIBBEAN CLASSICS
Windward Heights
Maryse Condé, 1995
Wuthering Heights in Guadaloupe.

A High Wind in Jamaica
Richard Hughes, 1929
English schoolchildren are kidnapped by pirates.

Oroonoko
Aphra Behn, 1688
An African slave leads a revolt in (English) Surinam.

Rum Island
S. Vestdijk, 1940
Man in 18th-century Jamaica investigates fraud and his father's murder.

Wide Sargasso Sea
Jean Rhys, 1966
An account of the life of Antoinette Cosway, the fictional character who becomes the madwoman in the attic in Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre.

The Kingdom of This World
Alejo Carpentier, 1949
Set in Haiti during the transition to independence, this novel tells of Ti Noel, a leader who draws on African spirituality and wisdom to lead a group of ex-slaves through chaotic times.

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