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Although I wasn’t a fan of this book (or Hesse’s other “masterpiece,” Steppenwolf), I recognize that it’s considered a classic in many cultures — in Switzerland and Germany, both of who claim the author as their own, and in Nepal and India, where the story, which prominently features Buddha and Buddhism, takes place. Several well-known music artists (Yes, Pete Townshend, Nick Drake) have written songs based on the book, so maybe you need a musical ear to get Hesse.
The Waiting Land
Irish author and incorrigible traveler Dervla Murphy has written more than two dozen books about her travels around the world, mostly to off-the-beaten-path locales. In her 1967 memoir, she recounts her time working at a Tibetan refugee camp in the Pokhara valley. (Thanks to Marilyn Terrell for introducing me to this book and its author.)
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