A SUNDAY TIMES MUST READS PICK
"Boundless imagination and a vibrant style . . . a heroine of unforgettable grit" DAVID GROSSMAN
"A story of great beauty and surprise" GARY SHTEYNGART
The townsfolk of Motal, an isolated, godforsaken town in the Pale of Settlement, are shocked when Fanny Keismann - devoted wife, mother of five, and celebrated cheese-maker - leaves her home at two hours past midnight and vanishes into the night.
True, the husbands of Motal have been vanishing for years, but a wife and mother? Whoever heard of such a thing. What on earth possessed her?
Could it have anything to do with Fanny's missing brother-in-law, who left her sister almost a year ago and ran away to Minsk, abandoning their family to destitution and despair?
Or could Fanny have been lured away by Zizek Breshov, the mysterious ferryman on the Yaselda river, who, in a strange twist of events, seems to have disappeared on the same night?
Surely there can be no link between Fanny and the peculiar roadside murder on the way to Telekhany, which has left Colonel Piotr Novak, head of the Russian secret police, scratching his head. Surely a crime like that could have nothing to do with Fanny Keismann, however the people of Motal might mutter about her reputation as a vilde chaya, a wild animal . . .
Translated from the Hebrew by Orr Scharf
Publisher: Quercus Publishing
Number of pages: 528
Weight: 760 g
Dimensions: 238 x 160 x 48 mm
A story of great beauty and surprise. A necessary antidote for our times -- Gary Shteyngart
The Slaughterman's Daughter is a miraculous patchwork-quilt of individual stories within stories told by different voices through which Fanny, the Belorussian Jewish slaughterman's daughter, cuts with her butcher's knife in search of justice. That quest for justice is the master story: a feminist picaresque set in a landscape of visionary and intimate historical and physical detail -- George Szirtes
Totally compulsive reading -- Rosemary Sullivan
With the sweeping grandeur of a Russian epic and the sly, sometimes bawdy humour of the Yiddish greats, The Slaughterman's Daughter is a magnificent triumph -- Bram Presser, author of The Book of Dirt
What begins as a small family drama explodes in every possible direction in its virtuosity * Haaretz *
An adventure story with few like it in modern Hebrew literature . . . a simply outstanding novel -- Yaron London * Walla *
A major novel that zigzags between characters and plots, between history and psychology, rooted in a brilliant narrative -- Gili Izikovich * Haaretz Gallery *
In The Slaughterman's Daughter, Iczkovits presents an original take on the historical novel which recreates - with a shrewd but affectionate look back at a lost world - Jewish life in the Russian empire at the end of the nineteenth century. The story's plot, characters, narrative style and the narrator's perspective are characterized by historical realism but also an element of fantasy. It is also worth noting the novel's brilliant insights, its winning humour, and especially the highly effective and readable blend of our vibrant, supple modern Hebrew and a distant, forgotten way of life. This is a novel of unquestionable uniqueness -- Dr. David Weinfeld, Dr. Shira Stav, Bilhah ben Eliyahu * Judges' Committee of the Agnon Prize *
This is a perfect, if rare, example of a contemporary Israeli narrative that is in living dialogue with the literary and historical past, drawing on it and constructing an utterly original, independent artistic structure on its foundations ... Iczkovits has created a sensual, richly vibrant Jewish world devoid of stereotypes, with flesh-and-blood characters to whom nothing human is foreign. There is no doubt. Iczkovits has pulled this off with wondrous success, yielding a virtuosic novel -- Professor Avner Holzman, Maya Sela, Amir Lev, Eldad Ziv, Netta Gurevitch * Judges' Committee of the Ramat Gan Prizze for Literary Excellence *
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