This mesmerizing novel about the life journey of a selfless Russian everywoman was shortlisted for the prestigious Russian Booker Prize. Fish is an expansive, gripping, often controversial story of the intimate fallout of imperial collapse, from one of Russia's most important writers.
In the wake of the Soviet breakup, inexorable forces drag Vera ("Faith" in Russian) from the desert of Central Asia, to exile in Southern Russia, to a remote forest-bound community of Estonians, to the chaos of Moscow. Facing a relentless onslaught of human and social trials, Vera swims against the current of life, countering the adversity and pain she meets with compassion and hope. Suffering through rape, abuse, dislocation and exile, Vera personifies Mother Russia's torment and resilience amid the Soviet disintegration. Nicknamed "Fish" by her abusive husband, who feels she is cold and unfeeling, Vera in fact discovers she has a powerful gift to alleviate the suffering of others, while she can do little to fend off the adversity that buffets her own life.
Aleshkovsky's work is remarkable for his commitment to the realistic novel tradition. Indeed, Fish is the first Russian novel to grapple with post-Soviet colonial otherness without transposing it into a fantastic, post-apocalyptic realm or reducing it to black-and-white conflicts of the popular detective genres. Stylistically, Aleshkovsky s prose most closely resembles the work of Vassily Aksyonov or Lyudmila Petrushevskaya, with its mastery of evocative detail and mystical undercurrents. The male author's choice of a first-person, female narrator (extremely rare in Russia) makes Fish all the more significant.
|Publisher:||Russian Life Books|
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||468 KB|
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