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    Στέλιος Χαλκίτης

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After losing his mother whilst still a young boy, Odysseas is put into the custody of his not-so-loving aunt. Alone in the world with no one to care for him, experiencing unfair punishment, outright rejection and the desperate need to be loved, Odysseas is determined to seek the truth to the imbalances of life. Into adulthood he would continue his struggle. It is a difficult task to get to know yourself; it hides sorrows, it needs pure motives, flaming inclination but, above all, love for humans. This love alone can ignite your willpower. Without it, the end is far and it awaits you like the horizon gazes at the ships that approach it but never reach it. For Odysseas, only persistence and trust in oneself will allow him to find what he ultimately craves for.

Κριτικές για το βιβλίο

Η κα. Cynthia Mathews, βιβλιοκριτικός, γράφει στην Επιθεώρηση Βιβλίου «MidwestBook Review»

A contemporary odyssean adventure, Marginus Morius is a novel which I have read three times so far. Why might you think, has it had this impact on me? Well, it’s actually because it is the type of book that, even though it is a work of fiction, it is infused with so much arcane knowledge that needs to be extracted by the reader like precious gems from within the bedrock of the storyline, a task which cannot be done in one reading, a fact which compelled me to write this review. The knowledge is revealed throughout an exciting journey beginning from a small Aegean island in contemporary Greece and then moving on to Athens the capital city, to India, to Mount Athos the monastic polity, to the Vatican City, and even into extraordinary states of existence. It touches on various current affairs issues, such as corruption in crisis-stricken Greece. It takes on metaphysical issues which fuel the main character’s travels.

Odysseas is a hero reminiscent to Homer’s and is as driven in pursing his goal which is to fulfill his spiritual, mental and emotional potential despite the obstacles he faces, political, moral and religious. It transcends boundaries of gender, theology, race, space and time. Lou is Odysseas’ guide taking him through his transformation. She is the daughter of a shipping magnate. She has had a head start on her personal quest. Their master, Verochios a monk on Mount Athos, is a wise elder who recognized their capabilities and groomed them. There are so many other equally engaging characters as well. The author manages to captivate the reader and render her or him a witness of the main character’s saga. Bible conspiracy theory could be considered a shared aspect that Marginus Morius has with Dan Brown’s international best selling mystery detective novel The Da Vinci Code. However, Marginus Morius is a much more complex and multi-faceted work, which dares to tackle life’s most troubling questions and what the beyond might entail.

The author Stelios Chalkitis, lives on the island of Kalymnos in the Dodecanese in south-eastern part of the Aegean Sea. He has extensively travelled in his own never-ending search for knowledge, so I gather that he has based much of the book on these trips. This is his debut novel. His second novel Lucirus is currently being translated. He is writing a third novel at the moment. He has also produced a philosophical work Ante Tractatum. He frequently gives lectures on philosophy, focusing on metaphysics, in Thessaloniki, in northern Greece.

Having been written in Greek originally, it was first published in 2012. It received accolades in Greece by academics and is a best seller. The Greek edition is actually being reprinted. It took me about two days to read its 430 pages. I was obviously enthralled and couldn’t put it down, and not only because of the plot. I must also comment on the English translation which is surprisingly quite good. I strongly recommend this book to readers of all ages, but who have achieved a certain level of maturity and open-mindedness, as it has something to offer everyone, literally. There is also room for romance. The writer’s style is rather baroque, it is imposing and plethoric. At the same time his prose borders on lyrical poetry.

«Who would dare to distill the lament of the tearing resin, or the giddiness of the blossoms that faint in the arms of the leaves? Who would stop to sense the aromatic rustling of the jasmine? Who would buy the perspiration of the dawn on the carpels of a shy cyclamen… the kiss of pollen that entices the bee, the salty panting of the seaweeds that are reunited with the open sea? Once man could perceive the messages of the earth, now he just watches TV…»

So, this is definitely a work with aesthetic value. I was quite moved by it, cried at various points, felt enlightened at others. It is a transformative book, so be ready for a mind-altering experience.

Αποσπάσματα

…The children of controversy quickly understood what we adults, with the obstinacy of mules, refuse to accept. Thatis,toaccept the futility of our struggle for freedom. Aspuriousfreedomthathasmadeusslavesofmillionsofotherthings. The horseshoe was found to be made of plastic.

We were not on time for the appointment. When we were sought out, we were not there. Wedidnotevengettherebelatedly.

We, likefaithfuleunuchsofa copper sheen, have lost ourway. Theyhadtopave their own way.

We drove them away from politics, so they embraced new technologies and through them they rebel, they excel, they strive for another sublime cause.

Today, now that principles have defaulted, values have been debased, and purposes havewaned, these young men and women have not learned to parrot others. They have something of their own to tell us. They have not surrendered stoically to our illusions, they have entered our domain, not the way enemies enter a city, but to liberate the slaves that thought they were the masters. They havebecomesystem breakers.

These children do not visit the Acropolis to admire Pericles, but the slaves that built it, perspiring of labor that smelt of soul and anguish, sweat and toil. These are the children of today. We live among great children…

Since the beginning of June, five months have gone by, from the moment Odysseas was decided to be orphaned and to live without his mother’s great love. […]

“Madam, why did my mother die? Is it true that God took her?” […]

He got wind of some chatter, “She has been put to rest…”

“Yes there was no other mother like her…”

“It was God’swill, he took her near him.” they said again and again.

But he was so angry with Holy God and people infuriated him. Suddenly, a wish like a flame lit up within him. You will be resurrected just like Christ. But it was hopeless. He soon found out that things of that sort are only said but are not done. What took him a while to figure out was that there is no parting in real love. It withstands death. There are conversations that are interrupted but never end…

He watches the playfulness of the sun that was not at all sovereign. Livid, pale and sleepless. He boards the “Axion Esti” and gets off again; he glances through the clouds, the frays of a sudden belated downpour. The sea is bitter- and bored too- without waves and fury. The future seems like the veil of the darkling night. Because “deep down everything is a matter of light”

“Woman is the hymn of creation. The best painters make wonderful paintings, the most perfect sculptors exquisite statues. But life is created only by woman.

Who would dare to distill the lament of the tearing resin, or the giddiness of the blossoms that faint in the arms of the leaves? Who would stop to sense the aromatic rustling if the jasmine? Who would buy the perspiration of the dawn on the carpels of a shy cyclamen…., the kiss of pollen that entices the bee, the salty panting of the seaweeds that are reunited with the open sea? Once man could perceive the messages of the earth, now he just watches TV…

The brave never celebrate, they always support lost causes.

So you will be egotistical and humble of heart. Fear those who preach humility and flaunt it around as if it were a spectacle, because the town criers of selfishness have nothing in common with the humble of heart, because the town criers of selfishness are those who preach humility. Humility is an unseen action, when it becomes visible then it is selfishness, it is the worst kind of covert selfishness, it is like acid rain that ages marble. Without selfishness there is no spiritual progress. And yes, in life we know that selfishness is frowned upon, in the pursuit of the divine it is a prerequisite. What does ‘the kingdom of God is in haste and those who seize it inherit it’ mean? The plunderers, the inquisitive, the uncompromising are selfish. They are those who are stifled by lies, hypocrisy and injustice. They are the fighters who with their life’s example become an inspiration to the people around them. The voice of those people is convincing and their look exonerates you.

The notebook slipped out of her hand in a snakelike motion and she slept on her right side until dawn.

To create a balance, you not only add drams but you also remove some.

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