The Fox Was Ever the Hunter

The Fox Was Ever the Hunter

A Novel

Book - 2016
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"An early masterpiece from the winner of the Nobel Prize hailed as the laureate of life under totalitarianism. Romania--the last months of the Ceausescu regime. Adina is a young schoolteacher. Paul is a musician. Clara works in a wire factory. Pavel is Clara's lover. But one of them works for the secret police and is reporting on all of the group. One day Adina returns home to discover that her fox fur rug has had its tail cut off. On another occasion it's the hindleg. Then a foreleg. The mutilated fur is a sign that she is being tracked by the secret police--the fox was ever the hunter. Images of photographic precision combine into a kaleidoscope of terror as Adina and her friends struggle to keep mind and body intact in a world pervaded by complicity and permeated with fear, where it's hard to tell victim from perpetrator. In The Fox Was Always a Hunter, Herta Müller once again uses language that displays the "concentration of poetry and the frankness of prose"--As the Swedish Academy noted upon awarding her the Nobel Prize--to create a hauntingly cinematic portrayal of the corruption of the soul under totalitarianism"-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Metropolitan Books/Henry Holt and Company, 2016.
Edition: First U.S. edition.
Copyright Date: ©2016
ISBN: 9780805093025
0805093028
Characteristics: 237 pages ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Boehm, Philip - Translator

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SPL_Shauna Aug 23, 2016

Initially, I came to Herta Muller's work to get more of a feel for what living in Ceausescu's Romania was like. My husband and his family lived through the revolution, and I wanted to find a way to understand without making them talk about it.

Muller's work is stark, poetic, bleak and devastating. She uses disjointed flashes of imagery repeatedly to code meaning, in what's likely a throwback to methods of communicating around the Securitate.

Although I found this novel more difficult to break into than The Land of the Green Plums (a previous of hers), I ultimately found it more rewarding and less bleak. Recommended for readers interested in Eastern European history or those interested in learning about life in a totalitarian regime. Lovers of poetry will gain the most from this book.

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