The prize-winning debut novel by the author of Before the Feast
Aleksandar is Comrade-in-Chief of fishing, the best magician in the non-aligned States and painter of unfinished things. He knows the first chapter of Marx's Das Kapital by heart but spends most of his time playing football in the Bosnian town of Visegrad on the banks of the river Drina.
When his grandfather, a master storyteller, dies of the fastest heart attack in the world while watching Carl Lewis's record, Aleksandar promises to carry on the tradition. However when the shadow of war spreads to Visegrad, the world as he knows it stops.
Suddenly it is not important how heavy a spider's life weighs, or why Marko's horse is related to Superman. Suddenly it is important to have the right name and to pretend that the little Muslim girl Asija is his sister. Then Aleksandar's parents decide to flee to Germany and he must leave his new friend behind.
Publisher: Pushkin Press
Number of pages: 288
Dimensions: 198 x 129 mm
Wonderfully inventive and impressive Guardian Sasa Stanisic's inventive flourishes... inject the novel with a breezy bravado Independent Enchanting Big Issue There are shades of Joyce here, and Pynchon too, but the whole retains a breathlessly unique, charmingly youthful and deliciously foreign voice... astonishing... simply world-class Irish Examiner Sad and magical Scotsman Impressive Metro A bold, questing work of art Los Angeles Times Funny, heartbreaking, beautifully written Seattle Times Wildly inventive... it rages rough and broad and joyful San Francisco Chronicle Sensational... a book that will dominate the discourse on how children experience war for a long time to come Foreign Policy Poignant and hauntingly beautiful Village Voice Dazzling... a novel rich with experience and imagination Kirkus Effervescent The Millions Authentic, adventurous TLS Deeply poignant... enchanting FT Wired... with a crackling tragi-comic current of rage and sorrow, nostalgia and grief -- Boyd Tonkin Independent