“What a tour de force to create out of tragedy such a grand comic design…the marriage of irony, violence and reverence for life.” LE FIGARO
“A great writer in perfect mastery of his gifts.” LE MONDE
A Proust-ian feast of memory and experience centering on young Paul and his family, who live through World War II in a remote Moldavian village that is swallowed by Stalin's Russia.
Armies advance and retreat. The boy's father, a fiercely idealistic teacher but a bungling family man, is deported to Soviet labor camps. This leaves Mother to take charge of the school, bury the dead of all sides, and try to protect her “little orphan” from the horrors of life as well as from its delicious corruptions.
Cover image by Marc Chagall.