The Question of Bruno by Aleksandar Hemon

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In this stylistically adventurous, brilliantly funny tour de force-the most highly acclaimed debut since Nathan Englander's-Aleksander Hemon writes of love and war, Sarajevo and America, with a skill and imagination that are breathtaking.

A love affair is experienced in the blink of an eye as the Archduke Ferdinand watches his wife succumb to an assassin's bullet. An exiled writer, working in a sandwich shop in Chicago, adjusts to the absurdities of his life. Love letters from war torn Sarajevo navigate the art of getting from point A to point B without being shot. With a surefooted sense of detail and life-saving humor, Aleksandar Hemon examines the overwhelming events of history and the effect they have on individual lives. These heartrending stories bear the unmistakable mark of an important new international writer.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

About Aleksandar Hemon

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Born in Sarajevo, Aleksandar Hemon visited Chicago in 1992, intending to stay for a matter of months. While he was there, Sarajevo came under siege, and he was unable to return home. Hemon wrote his first story in English in 1995. His work now appears regularly in The New Yorker, Granta, The Paris Review, and Best American Short Stories. He is the author of The Question of Bruno and Nowhere Man, which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Hemon was awarded a “genius grant” from the MacArthur Foundation in 2004. Riverhead will publish Hemon’s next book, Love and Obstacles, in 2009.
Published August 13, 2002 by Vintage. 240 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, History, Action & Adventure. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Question of Bruno

Kirkus Reviews

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On the other hand, particularly in the novella, a recounting of the wanderings of a Sarajevan transplanted to Chicago at the outset of the civil war, and in `The Sorge Spy Ring,` a longish, clever mix of autobiographical reminiscence and historical fact with a totally unexpected dark ending, Hemo...

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Publishers Weekly

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Elsewhere, history footnotes fiction, as in the experimental ""The Sorge Spy Ring,"" which juxtaposes a wryly compiled case file of an actual Soviet agent with a boy's fantasy of his father's spying for the U.S.S.R.

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Entertainment Weekly

Whether he's describing a boy who believes his father is a spy while telling the story of a real spy's life in footnotes (''The Sorge Spy Ring'') imagining Archduke Franz Ferdinand's last thouhgts (''Accordion''), or describing a man caught in the U.S. while war rages in his hometown in Eastern E...

Jun 02 2000 | Read Full Review of The Question of Bruno

London Review of Books

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News Review.

New to paperback, this book (winner of the LA Times Best Book and a New York Times Notable) is a remarkable collection of short stories about love and war that not only illuminate a common immigrant experience in this country, but also provide stylistically adventurous forays into war-torn life i...

Aug 09 2001 | Read Full Review of The Question of Bruno


In other stories, Hemon employs footnotes right within the core of the narrative to add some heft or intentionally distort our perception of fiction as history or fact by making his narratives something close to an essay.

Apr 06 2001 | Read Full Review of The Question of Bruno

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