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European Book Club at NYPL - LEECHES by David Albahari


November 13, 2012

This event will take place in the Corner Room - 1st Floor

Leeches -  A Book Discussion

"Now, six years after the fact, I realize things might have gone differently, but back then, on Sunday, March 8, 1998, when it all began, it was impossible to imagine any other way for events to unfold."   

The European Book Club

Country: Serbia


Serbia in the 1990’s; a journalist spots a man slapping a woman on the shore of the Danube. A few days after witnessing the altercation, the journalist receives a mysterious manuscript whose contents seem to mutate each time he opens it. To decipher the manuscript—he delves deep into the Kabbala and the history of the Jews of Zemun of Belgrade.  The event soon points to a complicated anti-Semitic conspiracy set in motion by the Patriotic Army of Unity and Salvation (PAUS).  As he begins to see signs of anti-Semitism throughout the city, he feels compelled to denounce it. However, his efforts are waylaid by a scandal that will end up in murder. In the style of Foucault’s Pendulum, Leeches is a cerebral adventure into the underground worlds of secret societies and conspiracy theories.

About the author

David Albahari (b. 1948 in Pec, Serbia, SFR Yugoslavia) is a writer and translator of Jewish origin from Kosovo. He resides in Calgary, Alberta, Canada since 1994. His writings are mainly novels and short stories in the Serbian language. A graduate of the University of Belgrade, his collection of short stories Description of Death won the Ivo Andric award in 1982. His novel Bait won the NIN award in 1996, as well as the Balcanica Award and Berlin Bridge Prize. His books have been translated into sixteen languages, and six of them are available in English: Words Are Something Else (1996), Tsing (1997), Bait (2001), Gotz and Meyer (2003, UK) (2005, US), Snow Man (2005), and Leeches (2011).

Book Discussion led by Louise Bergstresser, NYPL
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Find the book in the Libray: Leeches 

This event will take place in the First Floor Corner Room 

Read the Reviews from NPR  

The European Book Club is a monthly series of book discussions organized by ten European cultural institutes and consulates based in New York. There are no special membership requirements to participate. Simply check the European Book Club website  for upcoming meetings as they are announced, register, read the book, and join the discussion!

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