33 Moments of Happiness: St. Petersburg Stories

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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Dec 18, 2007 - Fiction - 320 pages
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An intriguing, fabulously bizarre debut collection of short stories by prize-winning German writer Ingo Schulze, author of Simple Stories.

These thirty-three macabre, often comical short pieces revolve around moments of odd bliss–moments seized by characters who have found ways to conquer the bleakness of everyday life in the chaotic world of post-communist Russia.

Peopled by Mafia gunmen, desperate young prostitutes, bewildered foreign businessmen, and even a trio of hungry devils, the stories are by turns tragic and bleakly funny. From a sly retelling of the legend of St. Nicholas featuring a rich American named Nick, to a lavish gourmet feast in which the young female cook ends up as the main dish, these stories are above all playful and even surreal–and many of them are masterful tributes to Russian writers from Gogol to Nabokov.

Translated by John E. Woods.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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33 moments of happiness: St. Petersburg stories

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It is an act of bravura for an outsider to attempt a literary portrait of a foreign city, but Schulze succeeds magnificently here. Usually beginning with a detailed and convincing depiction of life in ... Read full review

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About the author (2007)

Ingo Schulze, born in Dresden in 1962, studied classical philology at the University of Jena. His first book, 33 Moments of Happiness, won both Germany's prestigious Alfred Döblin Prize, the Ernst Willner Prize for Literature, and the Aspekte Literature Prize for literary debuts. Schultze is also the author of a novel, Simple Stories. He lives in Berlin.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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