The Little Trilogy

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Hippocrene Books, 1995 - Fiction - 245 pages
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In a new translation by Miroslaw Lipinski, The Little Trilogy contains everything readers have come to expect of the celebrated Sienkiewicz - charming and alluring characters, romance, heartbreak, action and adventure, humor and bravery. Set against the breathtaking panorama of the Polish countryside and the French wilderness, The Little Trilogy follows the volatile friendship between Selim Mirza, a Polonized Tartar, and Henryk, a character based on Sienkiewicz himself. These close friends share confidences and dreams, court the same beautiful girl, and ultimately fight side by side in the Franco-Prussian War in an army unit full of dangerous ruffians and bandits. At each turn there are the possibilities of glorious death or victorious life, eternal love or melancholic despair. On each page there is full evidence of Sienkiewicz's mastery at character delineation and exciting narrative. And behind it all is the perceptiveness of an author who was able to reveal, with both insight and compassion, the timeless truths that inform the human soul.

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About the author (1995)

Far more celebrated than any of his positivist contemporaries, Sienkiewicz began as a journalist and achieved considerable renown with his account of a two-year journey to the United States. Between 1882 and 1888 he wrote three historical novels dealing with political and military events in seventeenth-century Poland: With Fire and Sword, The Deluge (1886), and Fire in the Steppe (1888, also translated as Pan Michael). Although superficial in its analysis of historical events, the trilogy gained enormous popularity both in Poland and in other Slavic countries thanks to Sienkiewicz's masterful use of epic techniques and of the seventeenth-century colloquial idiom. Even more popular, if artistically far weaker, was his Quo Vadis? (1896), a novel about Rome in the age of Nero (Sienkiewicz's fame in the West is chiefly based on this work). Another historical novel, The Teutonic Knights (1900), deals with the fifteenth-century struggle between Poland-Lithuania and the Teutonic Order.

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