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East of the West Hardcover – 4 Aug 2011

4.7 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Sceptre (4 Aug. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1444733710
  • ISBN-13: 978-1444733716
  • Product Dimensions: 14.2 x 22.3 x 2.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 418,285 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

WINNER OF THE BBC SHORT STORY AWARD 2012. (.)

Bulgaria past and present, its magical fables, absurdist realities and political exigencies, are presented through the eyes of homesick emigr?s and those who have remained. Penkov's stories combine toughness, vulnerability and bravado...he applies humour and compassion in equal measure: this is a sparkling collection. (Guardian)

Humour, poignancy, tenderness and a deep sense of European history suffuse these lovely stories by a young Bulgarian writer of whom more will surely be heard. (Sunday Telegraph)

His splendid prose can be fleet, leisurely, colloquial, or formal... These stories are not the promising work of a first-time author. They are already a promise fulfilled--wise, bright, and deep with sympathy. (Alec Solomita, The New Republic)

There is a kind of magic at work in East of the West, a beautiful alchemy that combines wisdom and imagery, soul and story to render, finally, the pure gold of these tales. Miroslav Penkov is an extraordinary writer. May many books follow this one. (Bret Lott, author of Jewel and A Song I Knew by Heart)

Miroslav Penkov unpacks his stories with great skill, drawing the reader so deeply into the world he has created that when the magic comes - a father wrapping his son's eyelash in a handkerchief - it knocks the wind right out of you. EAST OF THE WEST captures the moments that prove we are truly living. (Hannah Tinti, author of The Good Thief)

Miroslav Penkov has successfully trapped two elusive creatures: the absurd beauty of Eastern Europe, and the emotional paradox of self-exile from that absurdity. His sense of history, his sense of humor, and his ability to create lasting characters make this book a dark yet hilarious pleasure. (Elizabeth Kostova, author of The Historian)

I suspect that Miroslav Penkov would be a wonderful writer in any language, but lucky for us, it happens to be English, and what funny, tender, tragic, and soulful stories he spins from his adopted tongue. EAST OF THE WEST is, simply put, one of the best collections I have read in years, ambitious and accomplished enough in scope to encompass east, west, and all stations in between. (Ben Fountain, author of Brief Encounters with Che Guevara)

Miroslav Penkov spins magical tales. There is wonderful humor here, and characters you will never forget. You will love this book. I cannot recommend it highly enough. (Ellen Gilchrist, National Book Award-winning author of A Dangerous Age and I Cannot Get You Close Enough)

Every once in a while, but no more often than that, a first book by a young writer comes along to restore a reader's faith in things. I mean big, serious things which matter, ones like memory, imagination, words, creativity and moral judgement...Rarely has such an intriguingly disparate cast been so deftly and dryly assembled...Penkov's stories are ironic without being trite, melancholic, but with a whiff of whimsy, revealing that they remain distinctly eccentric. He is a considerable, quirky, new talent. (Canberra Times)

Book Description

The debut of a new international star with an outstanding collection of short stories, spiked with homesickness and fizzing with the absurd.

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9 customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars

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30 November 2014
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