Frank Martinus Arion / Frank Martinus Arion – Double Play

Frank Martinus Arion – Double Play

Frank Martinus Arion – Double Play

Rights sold

  • English, German and Danish translations published years ago


About the book

On a drowsy, warm Sunday afternoon, four men play a game of dominos underneath a tamarind tree. The apparent calm that envelopes them gives the impression that this is about nothing more than a domino game. However, on this Sunday, their game will evolve into a fight of life or death. The men bring not only their tiles, but also their problems to the domino table: at the end of the day we know their what they think about one another, about each other’s wives, politics and the world. Double Play was translated in several languages. A film adaptation was released in May 2017. The movie was produced by Lisa Cortés and Gregory Elias and directed by Ernest Dickerson (Do The Right Thing; The Wire).

A fully-fledged political novel, written in a style of nearly unfathomable quality. – Vrij Nederland

Although Double Play is a first novel, it is the work of a mature writer – one who prepared himself for this sort of audience through life experience. (…) Beneath the ostensible goal of victory in dominoes, the four men are competing for individual power and for the loyalty of their lovers and wives. - World Literature Today

A cleverly constructed novel, full of sharp social observation and convincing characterisation, it tells us a good deal about Curaçao, about men, and about the darkness that lurks behind the seemingly innocent pastime of dominoes. - Caribbean Beat


Frank Martinus Arion (1936-2015) was born in Curaçao, where he was Catholic educated. He studied and taught Dutch literature in the Netherlands, where he was active in the Caribbean expatriate community and published poetry and fiction, and worked in Surinam from 1975. In 1980 he returned to Curaçao, where he was director of the Instituto Lingwistiko Antiano and an advocate of his own native Papiamento language. He published the novel Double Play (1973, awarded with the Van der Hoogte Prize), Goodbye to the Queen (1975), Noble Savages (1979), The Last Freedom (1995) and The Deserters (2006).

© Johannes Abeling