Heinrich Heine (1797-1856), one of Germany’s most illustrious poets, is equally well known for his idiosyncratic prose, the vibrant voice of which feels astonishingly modern in its familiar tone and thematic acrobatics. Travel Pictures comprises the accounts of four journeys taken at different times in his life. The first part, “The Harz Journey,” the quirky description of a walking tour in the Harz Mountains, is the text that first made him famous. But in all four accounts, skillfully joined, Heine does more than climb mountains, ford streams, and cross borders. In this remarkable book, seasoned by the skepticism of a born outsider, Heine, a bastard son of the German Romantics (he was the first Jew to proclaim that his fatherland was the German language), propels German letters into the Modern mind-set, lifting the book into the transcendent realm of great journey literature.