Friday, May 11, 2012

Paperback 527: Arch of Triumph / Erich Maria Remarque (Signet S796)

Paperback 527: Signet S796 (1st ptg, 1950)

Title: Arch of Triumph
Author: Erich Maria Remarque
Cover artist: James Avati

Yours for: $6

Sig796.Arch
Best things about this cover:
  • Now *this* is what an Avati cover typically looks like. A set piece. Still life with moody people. There's something almost religious about the tone of the paintings. This one is a very miniature Last Supper, if the Last Supper had consisted of wine, coffee, cigarettes, moody introspection, and distant staring.
  • Figures even have very faint haloes of light—grime-colored haloes.
  • What's happening beneath the table? Is he on pillows? Sitting crosslegged? Perspective seems slightly off to me.


Sig796bc.Arch

Best things about this back cover:
  • NOBODY CROSSES ERICH MARIA REMARQUE! NOBODY!
  • ERICH MARIA REMARQUE WILL HAVE HIS REVENGE!
  • ERICH MARIA REMARQUE CAN READ YOUR MIND!
  • Seriously, that is one freaky author photo.

Page 123~

He got up and began to dress. One must remain independent. Everything began with small dependencies. One did not notice them much. And suddenly one was entangled in the net of habit. Habit for which many names existed—love was one of them. One should not grow accustomed to anything. Not even to a body.

Not a fan of the long sentences. I like. I'm mentally underlining "entangled in the net of habit," which is a useful and elegant metaphor.

~RP

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7 comments:

Amanda said...

It does look strange under the table. To me, it looks like the lines from the couch are still visible. I don't know if he was lazy or just didn't care, but it looks like he just like white washed under table and that was that.

Keir said...

An astonishing arched eyebrow; which nearly rivals that of the master, Roger Moore.
For all the accolades offered to Remarque, he did live a remarkable life. To punish him for his 'treasonous' AQotWF, Hitler had had his sister decapitated.

Random White Guy said...

I can't be sure but I think the guy is in a bed and we're seeing the sheets on the mattress beneath the table. Otherwise I would be wondering what the woman is sitting on.

Deb said...

Woman: "Well, there wasn't much triumph in that arch of yours last night, was there?"

/Remarque was married to the actress Paulette Goddard (one of Charlie Chaplin's ex-wives) for a while.

Lisa in Oz said...

Love this cover - the lighting is lovely. Very Vermeer-esque.

Totally puzzled by what's on his lap though. Very fluffy napkin? Is he unusually tidy with his cigarettes and booze?

Titus Groan said...

Lisa,

Thanks for the "Vermeer-esque." I knew there was something familiar but was not able to pin it down. I will now be much more alert to "Vermeer-esque" sightings!

Rex Parker said...

Yes. Of course. Vermeer. That's a great analogue for Avati.

rp