I read it this afternoon, sitting in the garden. It has that Japanese device of repetition, which Baricco uses to brilliant effect. Each of the descriptions of Herve's journeys mention the local name for a lake. It's always different, 'the sea', 'the last', 'the demon', 'the holy' (from memory).
It's like the lyrics to Don Henley's Boys Of Summer, the verse always starts with:
And i can see youthen continues with these three different endings:
your brown skin shining in the sun
you got your hair combed back
sunglasses on baby
you know you're walking real slow
smiling at everyone
you got your top pulled down,I laughed when Herve asks:
radio on baby
"Do you know why Jean Berbeck stopped talking?"and Baldabiou replies:
"That's one of the many things he never said."