Blood from the Sky

Piotr Rawicz; Translated by Peter Wiles; With an Introduction by Lawrence Langer

View Inside Price: $34.00


April 10, 2003
336 pages, 5 1/2 x 8 1/4
ISBN: 9780300078305
Paper

“Rawicz extended the frontier of artistic expression, by giving the unbearable a bearable frame.”—from the introduction

With the publication of this paperback edition of Piotr Rawicz’s prizewinning Blood from the Sky, a classic of Holocaust literature emerges from many years out of print. A novel of richness and deep originality, it tells the story of Boris D., a Jewish resident of Lvov who poses as a non-Jew to evade the Nazis. Boris survives imprisonment in a death camp and moves to Paris following the war. Yet his account of his experiences is no celebration of survival; it is rather a commemoration of the horrifying deaths of countless others. Rawicz in this work has found a possible response to the events of the Holocaust: an unforgettable cry of lyric pain that transforms the horrors of history and memory into art.

Ukrainian Piotr Rawicz (1919–1982), despite successfully hiding his Jewish identity, was seized by the Gestapo in 1942 and imprisoned at Auschwitz-Birkenau. At the end of the Second World War he emigrated to France and wrote his only novel, Blood from the Sky, published in 1961. Called by John Felstiner “the Ulysses of its kind,” Rawicz’s novel won the distinguished French literary award the Prix Rivarol. The author led a bohemian and nomadic existence for the rest of his life, frequently championing the work of his friend Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. Rawicz committed suicide in 1982 after the death of his wife.

“Rawicz extended the frontier of artistic expression, by giving the unbearable a bearable frame.”—from the introduction




“The only work which totally transmutes the actual events into a kind of dark poetry.”—Helen Wolff

“Wantonly brilliant.”—Irving Howe


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