Synopses & Reviews
In the Balkan Peninsula, historys long-disputed bridge between Asia and Europe, the receding Byzantine empire has left behind a patchwork of warring peoples who fight over everything, from their pastures of sheep to the authorship of their countless legends.
One such gruesome tale declares that a castle under construction cannot be finished until a young masons bride has been walled up alive, one breast left exposed to suckle her growing infant even after her death. Myth becomes perverse reality when a mason is plastered into a bridge over a strategically important river, where his will not be the last human sacrifice.
"Kadare once again turns the proverb inside out: . . . he hurls his words—not glass but resounding crystal—against the stone houses of history." Richard Eder
This elliptical novel chronicles the events surrounding the construction of a bridge to illustrate the bitter history of cultural enmity in the Balkans.
About the Author
Ismail Kadare is the winner of the inaugural Man Booker International Prize, and is acclaimed worldwide as one of the most important writers of our time. Translations of his novels have been published in more than forty countries. He divides his time between Paris, France, and Tirana, Albania.
John Hodgson was born in England in 1951 and studied English at Cambridge and Newcastle. He has taught at the universities of Prishtina and Tirana. He now works as an Albanian-English translator and interpreter.