The Discovery of Heaven Read-a-Long: I’m joining in!

I’m joining in Iris on Books’ read-a-long of a book by a Dutch writer. I’m Dutch myself (as Iris is) and so it’s great fun to do a read-a-long of a countryman’s big tome. Big it is, over 900 pages.

The book is The Discovery of Heaven by Harry Mulish (1992).

The Discovery of Heaven by Harry MulishDe ontdekking van de hemel by Harry Mulish

My version is of course the original Dutch version De ontdekking van de hemel.

Harry Mulish is one of the most important Dutch writers of the second half of the 20th Century. He wrote a large number of works and died only last year. He won many awards and was knighted twice.

I read this book before, years ago, and to be fair, I can’t remember anything of it. But I checked with the Dutch online bookstor

On a cold night in Holland, Max Delius – a hedonistic, yet brilliant astronomer who loves fast cars, nice clothes and women – picks up Onno Quist, a cerebral chaotic philologist who cannot bear the banalities of everyday life. They are like fire and water. But when they learn they were conceived on the same day, it is clear that something extraordinary is about to happen. Their worlds become inextricably intertwined, as they embark on a life’s journey destined to change the course of human history. This title is a magnum opus that is also a masterful thriller.

Have you ever read a book by a Dutch writer? Maybe you’d like to join in the read-a-long and try Harry Mulish. We’re reading about 200 pages every fortnight (so 100 per week) and the first check-in is next weekend. But as with all read-a-longs, read in your own pace, and add comments to other people’s posts when you like.

Have a look at Iris’ post for more details.

Which Dutch writers have YOU read?

About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

18 Responses to The Discovery of Heaven Read-a-Long: I’m joining in!

  1. Rikki says:

    This sounds like an interesting book. I will see whether I can find it on my swap site for later. I am already doing a read along, so I will give this one a pass for now, but thanks for bringing the book to my attention.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Rikki, it would be great to see what you think of the book. I am also doing the Bolano read-a-long so it’s a bit much for me at the moment, too. Still, the other one is almost finished… 🙂

  2. Julie P says:

    Have fun with this, Judith!

  3. Alex says:

    I’m joining as well! Only about 50 pages in , so not sure I’ll follow the original plan, but I’ll try.

    • Leeswammes says:

      That’s nice, Alex. I still have to start the first part. I hope it’s enjoyable. I know I read the whole book years ago but it could be that I was a bit confused but it…

  4. Liz says:

    Read The Hiding Place and In My Fathers House by Corrie ten Boom.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Liz, I have never read anything by Corrie ten Boom. Did you enjoy her books?

      • Liz says:

        Completely. Gift from my sister to our brother, then to me. Have reread often when need to refocus. Lent to friend, whose reaction was the same.

        Other books by Corrie, which I need to track down.

      • Leeswammes says:

        Thanks for letting me know. I must look out for her books. Funny, but the name only sounds vaguely familiar even. It’s not a big author here in the Netherlands, I think.

  5. Erika says:

    This sounds really good. I doubt I’ll read along right now (so many on my bookshelf to get through!) but I’ve added it to my list for later. Thanks for bringing it to my attention 🙂

  6. Suzanne says:

    I am ashamed to say that I have not read any Dutch authors — I’ll see if I can find this book in the library or elsewhere.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Suzanne, it would be great if you could join in. Iris has declared June to be the month of Dutch literature, so she’ll write about some other Dutch authors too. I’m planning to do a giveaway of a Dutch author translated to English.

  7. Lian says:

    I’ve always wanted to read that one. Who knows, maybe I’ll join in the read along 🙂

  8. winstonsdad says:

    I m joining in ,I like nootebaum ,otto de kat and enjoy the other books by Mulish I ve read ,hope read some other dutch books to join in with Iris ,all the best stu

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