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Library JournalWhile short, this volume is not sweet; it is part poem, part novel, and part perverted fairy tale by the award-winning author of En busca de Klingsor (In Search of Klingsor), a book that also defies easy classification. Oscuro bosque oscuro show readers the darkest side of humanity by re-creating an incident from World War II. In 1945, in Hitler's Germany, 500 civilians—bakers, tailors, and old men no longer fit for combat—were trained to exterminate their Jewish neighbors. Volpi takes this incident out of its historical context and places it in a nonspecific everywhere, creating a sad sequence of events that demonstrates the depths to which humans can sink and have sunk. This devastating tale uses hypnotic language that directly invokes the reader, with each chapter featuring the retelling of a different fairy tale—from Hansel and Gretel to Little Red Riding Hood to Cinderella. All begin with a comforting familiarity soon to be replaced by endings that shock horribly—no prince saves the day, no witch is outwitted. Along the way, we, the readers, meet the recruited civilians, simple souls whose impulse is to serve their homeland. We accompany them on their journey through recruitment and training and on their despicable missions. Our complicity is inescapable. An important addition for large public and academic libraries; highly recommended.—Sara Martinez, Hispanic Resource Ctr., Tulsa City–Cty. Lib. Syst. OK
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