Reality and fiction blend in an ingenious short novel from the celebrated author of A Tale of Love and Darkness - witty, elegiac, playful and sexy
An unnamed author waits in a bar in Tel Aviv on a stifling hot night. He is there to give a reading of his work but as he sits, bored, he begins to conjure up the life stories of the people he meets, not least Ricky, an equally bored but seductive waitress. Later, when the reading is underway, he weaves stories around the audience and panel before asking the professional reader for a drink. She declines and the Author walks away, only to climb the steps to her flat later that night. Or does he?
In Amos Oz's beguiling, intriguing story the reader hardly knows where reality ends and invention begins...
“'A master class in interlocking character sketches, and a fable on the themes of sex, death and writing pitched somewhere between the fictional universes of JM Coetzee and Milan Kundera'”
“Delightful...a meditation, on the art of writing, the relationship between literature and life, between life and death...the work of a master. A book you are likely to return to'”
“'Oz writes with fluency and a sly humour'”
“'A playful and meditative examination of old age, literary posterity and the juxtaposition between literature and real life'”
“'Beautifully balanced between humour and sorrow'”
“In this slim yet weighty new novel, Oz explores the sparring between reality and fantasy, shedding light on the mysterious inner workings of the creative process itself, as if presenting an X-ray of an author's mind at work”
Anita Sethi, Indepedent on Sunday
“Read this book. When you are done, read it again. Each time you'll find something different, I promise.”