War Story Author:Gwen Edelman Kitty and Joseph meet in a bookstore in New York. She is thirty-two, an aspiring writer. He is sixty, a Viennese Jew, a famous playwright who survived the Holocaust. In a faded bohemian hotel, they begin an obsessive and all-consuming affair. Night after night he spins stories for her, tales of prewar Vienna, his childhood in Amsterdam hiding fr... more »om the Nazis, his literary triumphs, the countless women he has loved and left. One day, he tells her, he will leave her too.
"Bracing." (Los Angeles Times)
"Seductive." (San Francisco Chronicle)
"What can a new writer like Ms. Edelman say about the savage effects of the past that has not already been said by the likes of Primo Levi, André Schwarz-Bart, Cynthia Ozick, Isaac Bashevis Singer, William Styron and many others?...Ms. Edelman's stark, intelligent portrait of [Joseph] gives War Story its distinction...a character who is entirely believable-indeed, you feel that you have encountered someone like him yourself-and yet entirely different from any other being you've encountered, in life or in literature." (Richard Bernstein, New York Times)
"[War Story] takes no prisoners. It's the kind of in-your-face fiction that assaults the reader from beginning to end...makes for exhilarating, if horrific, reading." (Newsday)
"Gwen Edelman's brilliant first novel opens a new perspective on the history of the human heart; it's a tale of the Holocaust as it is lived not in memory, but in the real world, between generations, between lovers." (Adam Zagajewski)
"In the pared-down manner of a modern-day Colette, Gwen Edelman tells the story of a young woman's love for an unlikely older man. War Story packs a hard punch. War and love, age and beauty, cynicism and passion-it's all here, rendered with a level head and a stinging heart." Dani Shapiro, author of Slow Motion: A True Story)« less