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Klotsvog | Margarita Khemlin
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Klotsvog is a novel about being Jewish in the Soviet Union and the historical trauma of World War IIand its a novel about the petty dramas and demons of one strikingly vain woman. Maya Abramovna Klotsvog has had quite a life, and she wants you to know all about it. Selfish, garrulous, and thoroughly entertaining, she tells us where she came from, who she didnt get along with, and what became of all her husbands and lovers. In Klotsvog, Margarita Khemlin creates a first-person narrator who is both deeply self-absorbed and deeply compelling. From Mayas perspective, Khemlin unfurls a retelling of the Soviet Jewish experience that integrates the historical and the personal into her protagonists vividly drawn inner and outer lives. Mayas life story flows as a long monologue, told in unfussy language dense with Khemlins magnificently manipulated Soviet clichs and matter-of-fact descriptions of Soviet life. Born in a center of Jewish culture in Ukraine, she spent the war in evacuation in Kazakhstan. She has few friends but has had several husbands, and her relationships with her relatives are strained at best. The war looms over Klotsvog, and the trauma runs deep, as do the ambiguities and ambivalences of Jewish identity. Lisa Haydens masterful translation brings this gripping character study full of dark, sly humor and new perspectives on Jewish heritage and survival to an English-speaking audience.
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Klotsvog | Margarita Khemlin
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Klotsvog is translated from Russian by Lisa Hayden & gives a glimpse of how it was to be Jewish in the Soviet Union. Maya is a unique anti-heroine; beautiful, self-obsessed, & difficult. Her struggles as a Jewish woman & mother are both poignant & hard to take: Maya invites drama & grief into her life because of her character. The end is particularly moving & while I found the book's ironic tone compelling, I didn't warm to it totally. #netgalley

batsy Background photo taken from here https://www.meganstarr.com/soviet-kiev/ 2mo
TrishB Great review 👍🏻 2mo
batsy @TrishB Thank you! 💜 2mo
charl08 Sounds really interesting. Will have a look for it. 2mo
batsy @charl08 Although it wasn't a total pick for me, it's definitely worth a read for anyone interested in Soviet literature. 2mo
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Klotsvog | Margarita Khemlin
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Surprised myself & finished:
A Lost Lady for #catherbuddyread
In Cold Blood for #readcoldblood
Act 4 of King Lear for #ShakespeareReadAlong.

Litsy University is good for me 😆 Also started the #netgalley ARC of Klotsvog, a bleak yet funny portrait of a self-absorbed Jewish woman in the Soviet Union.


👑 To finish Act 5 & complete King Lear
💄 Continue with Klotsvog
🌸 Start Judith Hearne for #NYRBbookclub

JennyM You‘ve had a great week! Love seeing what everyone‘s read 😘 2mo
batsy @JennyM Thank you ❤️ I enjoy seeing everyone's recaps too! 2mo
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Cinfhen Me too @JennyM and of course my TBR is growing!!!!!! 2mo
vivastory Litsy University 😂 2mo
BarbaraBB Litsy University 🤣 2mo
BarbaraBB It seems like someone on the other side of the world was thinking exactly the same thing at exactly the same time! 😀 @vivastory 2mo
vivastory @BarbaraBB Great minds 🙂 2mo
Cathythoughts Great week for you 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻Litsy University is exactly it. I‘m definitely on a learning curve sinse joining Litsy .... it‘s a blessing 👍🏻❤️ 2mo
Cinfhen #LitsyUniversity is priceless and admission costs are beyond reasonable 🙌🏻🤓 2mo
squirrelbrain Love #LitsyUniversity and entirely agree, I love being a student here! 2mo
erzascarletbookgasm Well done for the week! I love #LitsyUniversity too! I may want to be a student here for a long long time. 2mo
batsy @BarbaraBB @vivastory LOL love it! 2mo
batsy @Cathythoughts @Cinfhen @squirrelbrain @erzascarletbookgasm I love Litsy U 😁 It's like being in a fun, extremely motivating and engaging class 💖 2mo
fleeting Really interested in that Moore book! 2mo
RachelO Isn‘t ‘Surprised myself & finished...‘ the best feeling?! 2mo
batsy @fleeting I'm looking forward! 2mo
batsy @RachelO Yes! 😁 2mo
Daisey I appreciate all the extra learning I get through Litsy University readalongs as well. Great way to put it! I never would have taken such a dive into further reading along with In Cold Blood otherwise. 2mo
batsy @Daisey Yup! I've tackled a number of books that have been tbr for years via group reads here. Having others want to read a book is a great motivator, and the chats and posts are great :) 2mo
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Klotsvog | Margarita Khemlin
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Finished Dracula & really enjoyed it! Dense & atmospheric.

Started A Lost Lady for the #catherbuddyread & continued on with King Lear for #ShakespeareReadAlong


To continue with both the Cather & Shakespeare, & to start In Cold Blood for the low-key buddy read with @merelybookish @readordierachel @Texreader (sorry if I missed anyone!)

Will try to start a Net Galley ARC, the tagged book, *if* I can 🤞🏽 @Cinfhen

BarbaraBB Such great reads! 3mo
Cathythoughts Great books ! Look forward to your thoughts on In Cold Blood ... I‘m hoping to read too ( for the 3d time ) 3mo
Cinfhen I‘m also hoping to add one ARC a week 🤞🏼glad you enjoyed Dracula 🧛‍♂️ that was a great idea @erzascarletbookgasm xx 3mo
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batsy @BarbaraBB All thanks to Litsy group reads 😁 3mo
batsy @Cathythoughts 3rd time! That speaks very highly of it. I'm excited to start. Join us! 🎉 3mo
batsy @Cinfhen @erzascarletbookgasm Fabulous idea! So glad that I finally got around to it. 3mo
erzascarletbookgasm @cinfhen @batsy Yes I‘m so glad to read it with two amazing Littens! 💕 3mo
Freespirit Love Dracula ❤️ 3mo
DGRachel That‘s an amazing cover for Dracula! 😂 2mo
batsy @Freespirit A fun read for sure 👍🏽 2mo
batsy @DGRachel Really eye-catching! 😆 2mo
readordierachel Loving that edition of In Cold Blood! 2mo
batsy @readordierachel I was so happy to find it at the discount bookstore! 2mo
83 likes13 comments
Klotsvog | Margarita Khemlin
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A raw look at life from the point of view of a young Jewish woman in the Ukraine in the post WWII 1950s and 1960s. I think when people have been forced to do and see unspeakable things to survive they are deeply and eternally affected and develop a lack of faith in humankind for the rest of their lives.