Elegy for Kosovo: A Novel

Skyhorse
2
Free sample

From the winner of the Man Booker International Prize and author of A Girl in Exile. “One of the most compelling novelists now writing in any language” (The Wall Street Journal).
 
June 28, 1389: Six hundred years before Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic called for the repression of the Albanian majority in Kosovo, there took place, on the Field of the Blackbirds, a battle shrouded in legend. A coalition of Serbs, Albanian Catholics, Bosnians, and Romanians confronted and were defeated by the invading Ottoman army of the Sultan Murad. This battle established the Muslim foothold in Europe and became the centerpiece of Serbian nationalist ideology, justifying the campaign of ethnic cleansing of Albanian Kosovars that the world witnessed with horror at the end of the past century.
 
In this eloquent and timely reflection on war, memory, and the destiny of two peoples, Ismail Kadare explores in fiction the legend and the consequences of that defeat. Elegy for Kosovo is a heartfelt yet clear-eyed lament for a land riven by hatreds as old as the Homeric epics and as young as the latest news broadcast.
 
“Kadare is patently a world-class novelist and prose poet.” —The Boston Globe
 
“He has the gift of writing parables of great weight in the lightest of tones.” —Los Angeles Times
 
“A courageous and accomplished storyteller who is simply one of the best novelists alive.” —The News & Observer (Raleigh)
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About the author

Ismail Kadare is the most prominent of contemporary Albanian writers. He has written poetry, short stories, literary criticism, and seven novels. His works have been translated and published in more than two dozen countries. An internationally known figure, he has visited and lectured in many countries. He was also a representative to Albania's People's Assembly. In 1990 Kadare left Albania for Paris where he became openly dissident.

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Additional Information

Publisher
Skyhorse
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Published on
Dec 3, 2011
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Pages
128
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ISBN
9781628722390
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Cultural Heritage
Fiction / Historical / General
Fiction / Political
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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This intimate look at the people and culture of war-torn Albania, as seen through the eyes of a child, is a “thoroughly enchanting novel” (John Updike).
 
Masterful in its simplicity, Chronicle in Stone is a touching coming-of-age story and a testament to the perseverance of the human spirit. Surrounded by the magic of beautiful women and literature, a boy must endure the deprivations of war as he suffers the hardships of growing up. His sleepy country has just thrown off centuries of tyranny, but new waves of domination inundate his city. Through the boy’s eyes, we see the terrors of World War II as he witnesses fascist invasions, allied bombings, partisan infighting, and the many faces of human cruelty—as well as the simple pleasures of life.
 
Evacuating to the countryside, he expects to find an ideal world full of extraordinary things, but discovers instead an archaic backwater where a severed arm becomes a talisman and deflowered girls mysteriously vanish. Woven between the chapters of the boy’s story are tantalizing fragments of the city’s history. As the devastation mounts, the fragments lose coherence, and we perceive firsthand how the violence of war destroys more than just buildings and bridges.
 
“Sophisticated and accomplished in its poetic prose and narrative deftness, yet drawing resonance from its roots in one of Europe’s most primitive societies.” —John Updike
 
“Kadare has succeeded in creating a tale that breaches the boundaries of Albania’s specific tragedy . . . A beguiling conjunction of realism and fantasy.” —The New York Times
 
“Albania, that remote, unknown land, has found its voice in the novels of Kadare. Kadare commands a tumultuous, whirling scene as he brings his homeland into the literary mainstream.” —Publishers Weekly
 
“A great novel . . . A joyful, often comic piece of work.” —The New Yorker
 
“Epic in its simplicity; the history of a young Albanian and a primitive Albania awakening into the modern world.” —Minneapolis Star-Tribune
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