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The Tiger's Wife    by Téa Obreht order for
Tiger's Wife
by Téa Obreht
Order:  USA  Can
Random House, 2011 (2011)
Hardcover, CD, e-Book

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* * *   Reviewed by Tim Davis

Readers will recognize quickly in the first few pages that The Tiger's Wife, at least on its surface, is the story of the aftermath of a war - the people who had been involved in it, the people who had perished in it, and the people who had survived it. In fact, as the novel begins, readers are invited to visit the beautiful Balkans, a land where the 'war had altered everything.'

The narrator, a young Balkan physician, Natalia Stefanoviæ, navigates bravely through the scarred storybook landscape where people who may have been battered by their wartime experiences remain defiant and undefeated. However, during her adventures, beginning with a humanitarian trip to an orphanage at a seaside resort, Natalia suddenly finds herself - somewhat like a character in a folktale - enmeshed in a fantastic and puzzling world in which she confronts mysterious memories of her dead grandfather, enigmatic tales of a man who cannot die, and strangely evocative stories of a starving tiger rescued by an innocent soul.

Author Téa Obreht, through her lyrical tribute to people and place, offers readers a spellbinding, magical tale in which two things are absolutely certain: 'Dying makes people do strange things' and - more importantly - the dead inexplicably and mysteriously 'give something to the living.' Those two things combine to become the miraculous heart and soul of this wonder-filled novel by an astounding new talent. Don't miss it!

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