Popular Romania Books

30+ [Hand Picked] Popular Books On Romania

Discover the list of some best books written on Romania by popular award winning authors. These book on topic Romania highly popular among the readers worldwide.

4.5/5

The Girl They Left Behind by Roxanne Veletzos

A sweeping family saga and love story that offers a vivid and unique portrayal of life in war-torn 1941 Bucharest and life behind the Iron Curtain during the Soviet Union occupation—perfect for fans of Lilac Girls and Sarah’s Key. On a freezing night in January 1941, a little Jewish girl is found on the steps of an apartment building in Bucharest. With Romania recently alli A sweeping family saga and love story that offers a vivid and unique portrayal of life in war-torn 1941 Bucharest and life behind the Iron Curtain during the Soviet Union occupation—perfect for fans of Lilac Girls and Sarah’s Key. On a freezing night in January 1941, a little Jewish girl is found on the steps of an apartment building in Bucharest. With Romania recently allied with the Nazis, the Jewish population is in grave danger, undergoing increasingly violent persecution. The girl is placed in an orphanage and eventually adopted by a wealthy childless couple who name her Natalia. As she assimilates into her new life, she all but forgets the parents who were forced to leave her behind. They are even further from her mind when Romania falls under Soviet occupation. Yet, as Natalia comes of age in a bleak and hopeless world, traces of her identity pierce the surface of her everyday life, leading gradually to a discovery that will change her destiny. She has a secret crush on Victor, an intense young man who as an impoverished student befriended her family long ago. Years later, when Natalia is in her early twenties and working at a warehouse packing fruit, she and Victor, now an important official in the Communist regime, cross paths again. This time they are fatefully drawn into a passionate affair despite the obstacles swirling around them and Victor’s dark secrets. When Natalia is suddenly offered a one-time chance at freedom, Victor is determined to help her escape, even if it means losing her. Natalia must make an agonizing decision: remain in Bucharest with her beloved adoptive parents and the man she has come to love, or seize the chance to finally live life on her own terms, and to confront the painful enigma of her past.

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3.7/5

Bottled Goods by Sophie van Llewyn

When Alina’s brother-in-law defects to the West, she and her husband become persons of interest to the secret services, causing both of their careers to come grinding to a halt. As the strain takes its toll on their marriage, Alina turns to her aunt for help – the wife of a communist leader and a secret practitioner of the old folk ways. Set in 1970s communist Romania, this When Alina’s brother-in-law defects to the West, she and her husband become persons of interest to the secret services, causing both of their careers to come grinding to a halt. As the strain takes its toll on their marriage, Alina turns to her aunt for help – the wife of a communist leader and a secret practitioner of the old folk ways. Set in 1970s communist Romania, this novella-in-flash draws upon magic realism to weave a tale of everyday troubles, that can’t be put down.

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4.1/5

The Book of Mirrors by E.O. Chirovici

One Man's Truth Is Another Man's Lie. When big-shot literary agent Peter Katz receives an unfinished manuscript entitled The Book of Mirrors, he is intrigued. The author, Richard Flynn is writing a memoir about his time at Princeton in the late 80s, documenting his relationship with the famous Professor Joseph Wieder. One night in 1987, Wieder was brutally murdered in his ho One Man's Truth Is Another Man's Lie. When big-shot literary agent Peter Katz receives an unfinished manuscript entitled The Book of Mirrors, he is intrigued. The author, Richard Flynn is writing a memoir about his time at Princeton in the late 80s, documenting his relationship with the famous Professor Joseph Wieder. One night in 1987, Wieder was brutally murdered in his home and the case was never solved. Peter Katz is hell-bent on getting to the bottom of what happened that night twenty-five years ago and is convinced the full manuscript will reveal who committed the violent crime. But other people’s recollections are dangerous weapons to play with, and this might be one memory that is best kept buried.

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5/5

The Atlas of Beauty: Women of the World in 500 Portraits by Mihaela Noroc

Photographs and stories of 500 women from around the world, based on the author's hugely popular website. Since 2013 Mihaela Noroc has travelled the world with her backpack and camera taking photos of everyday women to showcase the diversity and beauty all around us. The Atlas of Beauty is a collection of her photographs that celebrates women from fifty countries across the Photographs and stories of 500 women from around the world, based on the author's hugely popular website. Since 2013 Mihaela Noroc has travelled the world with her backpack and camera taking photos of everyday women to showcase the diversity and beauty all around us. The Atlas of Beauty is a collection of her photographs that celebrates women from fifty countries across the globe and shows that beauty is everywhere, regardless of money, race or social status, and comes in many different sizes and colours. Mihaela's portraits feature women in their native environments, from the Amazon rain forest to markets in India, London city streets and parks in Harlem, creating a mirror of our varied cultures and proving that beauty has no rules. 'Stunning . . . aims to challenge the ideals of beauty dictated by the women's fashion magazine industry' Independent 'A startling and revealing project' Daily Mail 'Scrolling through "The Atlas of Beauty", beauty becomes not a universal standard, but a complicated tapestry' Huffington Post

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3.3/5

Music for Wartime: Stories by Rebecca Makkai

Named a must-read by the  Chicago Tribune , O Magazine,  BuzzFeed ,  The Huffington Post ,  Minneapolis Star-Tribune , and The L Magazine Named one of the best short story collections of 2015 by Bookpage and Kansas City Star Rebecca Makkai’s first two novels, The Borrower and The Hundred-Year House, have established her as one of the freshest and most imaginative voices Named a must-read by the  Chicago Tribune , O Magazine,  BuzzFeed ,  The Huffington Post ,  Minneapolis Star-Tribune , and The L Magazine Named one of the best short story collections of 2015 by Bookpage and Kansas City Star Rebecca Makkai’s first two novels, The Borrower and The Hundred-Year House, have established her as one of the freshest and most imaginative voices in fiction. Now, the award-winning writer, whose stories have appeared in four consecutive editions of The Best American Short Stories, returns with a highly anticipated collection bearing her signature mix of intelligence, wit, and heart. A reality show producer manipulates two contestants into falling in love, even as her own relationship falls apart. Just after the fall of the Berlin Wall, a young boy has a revelation about his father’s past when a renowned Romanian violinist plays a concert in their home. When the prized elephant of a traveling circus keels over dead, the small-town minister tasked with burying its remains comes to question his own faith. In an unnamed country, a composer records the folk songs of two women from a village on the brink of destruction. These transporting, deeply moving stories—some inspired by her own family history—amply demonstrate Makkai’s extraordinary range as a storyteller, and confirm her as a master of the short story form.  “Richly imagined.” —Chicago Tribune   “Impressive.” —O, The Oprah Magazine   “Engrossing.” —Minneapolis Star-Tribune   “Inventive.” —W Magazine  

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3.9/5

Silver in the Blood by Jessica Day George

Society girls from New York City circa 1890, Dacia and Lou never desired to know more about their lineage, instead preferring to gossip about the mysterious Romanian family that they barely knew. But upon turning seventeen, the girls must return to their homeland to meet their relatives, find proper husbands, and—most terrifyingly—learn the deep family secrets of The Claw, Society girls from New York City circa 1890, Dacia and Lou never desired to know more about their lineage, instead preferring to gossip about the mysterious Romanian family that they barely knew. But upon turning seventeen, the girls must return to their homeland to meet their relatives, find proper husbands, and—most terrifyingly—learn the deep family secrets of The Claw, The Wing, and The Smoke. The Florescus, after all, are shape-shifters, and it is time for Dacia and Lou to fulfill the prophecy that demands their acceptance of this fate... or fight against this cruel inheritance with all their might.

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3.9/5

Povestiri de pe Calea Moșilor by Adina Popescu

„Povestiri de pe Calea Moșilor este prima mea carte de proză scurtă pentru adulți, deși cred că și pentru copiii de la 12 ani în sus ar putea fi o lectură simpatică și pe undeva utilă. În fond, este vorba despre copilărie, copilăria mea și implicit a generației mele care s-a întâmplat undeva la granița dintre două regimuri, cel comunist și cel capitalist «de tranziție» al „Povestiri de pe Calea Moșilor este prima mea carte de proză scurtă pentru adulți, deși cred că și pentru copiii de la 12 ani în sus ar putea fi o lectură simpatică și pe undeva utilă. În fond, este vorba despre copilărie, copilăria mea și implicit a generației mele care s-a întâmplat undeva la granița dintre două regimuri, cel comunist și cel capitalist «de tranziție» al anilor ‘90. Mi se pare un noroc faptul că «am prins» ultimii ani de dictatură, că am fost comandantă de detașament și am colectat frunze de dud pentru viermii de mătase, deși recunosc că o parte din angoasele și complexele mele de acum își au rădăcini în vremurile de atunci. În carte veți citi despre viața și întâmplările mărunte de pe o stradă aparent banală care s-a schimbat, s-a transformat sub ochii mei, pe măsură ce creșteam. O stradă care încă reprezintă mica mea lume. Locurile din carte există și în realitate – intersecția de la Eminescu, strada școlii și biserica Silvestru, magazinul Bucur Obor, străduțele «din spate» care pe atunci nu-mi inspirau încredere pentru că n-aveau blocuri și termoficare. Doar duzii au fost tăiați, din motive misterioase, inexplicabile. Iar cartea este scrisă din perspectiva copilului de atunci, într-un moment în care simțeam că dacă nu mă întorc în timpul acela și nu recuperez o parte din el, n-o să mai pot continua cu toată maturitatea asta câteodată apăsătoare și frustrantă.“ – Adina Popescu

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3.8/5

Orice om îi este teamă: un partid, doi ani și trei premieri by Radu Paraschivescu

„Îşi bat joc de tine. Te fură, te învârt pe degete, te mint. Îţi castrează legile şi-ţi râd în nas. Te fac să-ţi fie ruşine să scoţi buletinul în aeroporturile lumii. Te tratează cu dispreţ şi, când li se pare c-ar fi nevoie, cu gaze. Te duc cu preşul promisiunilor. Te cred naiv, manipulabil, neinformat. De doi ani. Săptămână de săptămână, zi de zi, ceas de ceas. Trăieşti î „Îşi bat joc de tine. Te fură, te învârt pe degete, te mint. Îţi castrează legile şi-ţi râd în nas. Te fac să-ţi fie ruşine să scoţi buletinul în aeroporturile lumii. Te tratează cu dispreţ şi, când li se pare c-ar fi nevoie, cu gaze. Te duc cu preşul promisiunilor. Te cred naiv, manipulabil, neinformat. De doi ani. Săptămână de săptămână, zi de zi, ceas de ceas. Trăieşti într-o ţară aflată în pragul cleptocraţiei, într-o democratură condusă de condamnaţi penal, de impostori şi de analfabeţi. Suporţi zilnic ruşinea de-a avea miniştri care nu ştiu să scrie şi să vorbească nici măcar în limba lor. Te revolţi şi îţi strigi disperarea în pieţe. Iar uneori încerci să scapi de sufocare râzând. Măcar câteva minute sau o oră. Orice om îi este teamă, cartea-parastas a României după doi ani de guvernare PSD, e o amendă simbolică pentru partidul care mai are puţin şi îşi îngenunchează ţara. Dar nu numai. E în acelaşi timp un instrument care măsoară trei decenii de speranţe înşelate şi de iluzii pierdute.“ – Radu Paraschivescu

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3.9/5

Așa să crească iarba pe noi by Augustin Cupşa

Edi, Pisică, Tobă, frații Mânzu și Tomi trăiesc la periferia Craiovei și se ocupă cu braconajul mai multor specii de păsări pe care le vând apoi, pe filieră interlopă, în Italia. Repovestite de vocea lui Pisică, cel mai fragil și sensibil dintre copii, întâmplările capătă dimensiuni dramatice, care dezvăluie și temele profunde ale cărții: sentimentul de vinovăție, dublat d Edi, Pisică, Tobă, frații Mânzu și Tomi trăiesc la periferia Craiovei și se ocupă cu braconajul mai multor specii de păsări pe care le vând apoi, pe filieră interlopă, în Italia. Repovestite de vocea lui Pisică, cel mai fragil și sensibil dintre copii, întâmplările capătă dimensiuni dramatice, care dezvăluie și temele profunde ale cărții: sentimentul de vinovăție, dublat de obsesia evadării într-o Italie idealizată, tărâm al visurilor împlinite, credința, singurătatea, descoperirea erotismului. Într-o atmosferă salingeriană, cu o tensiune și o violențã care plutesc în aer, pentru a izbucni în final cu o forță care deturnează definitiv viețile tuturor personajelor, romanul lui Augustin Cupșa creează o lume întreagã, cu legi nescrise, dar imuabile, un paradis înșelător, al inocenților, cu peisaje mirifice care ascund de fapt răul în formele sale cele mai subtile. „Acum sunt departe de casă, dar şi acolo m-am simţit de prea multe ori înstrăinat, nefiind tocmai de-al locului. Craiova a rămas unde am lăsat-o, părăsită în mijlocul câmpiilor cu buruieni şi mărăcini, cu drumuri prăfuite, cu şine de tren care sclipesc în soarele ucigător, iar timpul ei stă odată cu lucrurile deja trăite. Am scris despre Sud pentru că Sudul e o stare, şi chiar dacă pleci de acolo, Sudul vine cu tine oriunde te-ai duce.“ (Cupșa)

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4/5

Ai uitat să râzi by Bogdan Munteanu

„Gata, Teo, plec! Râdem prea puțin, înțelegi?“ Personajele lui Bogdan Munteanu evoluează în scene de viață ce mențin mereu balansul fin între plâns și râs. Vieți care nu se mai întorc, iubiri care nu se mai trăiesc, povești care nu se mai spun până la capăt, trăiri care nu se mai dezvăluie deplin, într-o carte în care fiecare cititor poate descoperi câte ceva despre ceilalț „Gata, Teo, plec! Râdem prea puțin, înțelegi?“ Personajele lui Bogdan Munteanu evoluează în scene de viață ce mențin mereu balansul fin între plâns și râs. Vieți care nu se mai întorc, iubiri care nu se mai trăiesc, povești care nu se mai spun până la capăt, trăiri care nu se mai dezvăluie deplin, într-o carte în care fiecare cititor poate descoperi câte ceva despre ceilalți și mai ales despre sine. „În povestirile lui Bogdan Munteanu, punctele de cotitură sunt atât de surprinzătoare, încât râsul cel mai limpede se preschimbă fulgerător în cea mai zdravănă apăsare. Ca în filmele cu Charlie Chaplin.“ – Dana Jenaru „Ai uitat să râzi e volumul unui autor pentru care literatura încă are legătură cu rădăcinile ei: ea e, trebuie să fie poveste, epos, spusă cu pasiune, ca în vremurile de demult, când publicul nu erau cititorii, ci ascultătorii.“ – Luminița Corneanu „Pentru așa o bijuterie de carte, nu cred că e nevoie de un subtitlu, dar dacă totuși ar fi nevoie, cred că i s-ar potrivi cel mai bine formularea «povestiri cu sufletul pe masă». Altfel, mă bucur din adâncul inimii că pe copertă e numele lui Bogdan Munteanu. Un nume pe care, ușor, ușor, o să-l învățăm cu toții și o să-l ținem minte.“ – Filip Florian

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3.5/5

Interior zero by Lavinia Braniște

„Ajunsă la cea de-a treia carte de proză, Lavinia Braniște a reușit ceva ce alții nu obțin nici pînă la finalul carierei: să aibă un personaj personal, un tip recognoscibil care navighează dintr-o carte în alta, cam ca Henry Chinaski al lui Bukowski, toutes proportions gardees... Iarăși, Lavinia dă senzația că scrie foarte ușor, că pur şi simplu notează ce i s-a întîmplat „Ajunsă la cea de-a treia carte de proză, Lavinia Braniște a reușit ceva ce alții nu obțin nici pînă la finalul carierei: să aibă un personaj personal, un tip recognoscibil care navighează dintr-o carte în alta, cam ca Henry Chinaski al lui Bukowski, toutes proportions gardees... Iarăși, Lavinia dă senzația că scrie foarte ușor, că pur şi simplu notează ce i s-a întîmplat peste zi, or, asta este proza cea mai «muncită» de fapt. Acest comportamentism lejer, marca Laviniei, ascunde framîntări, revolte, chiar şi o teorie personală a literaturii. Nu ştiu dacă avem în faţă un roman sau proză scurtă: aş spune mai curînd că este harta unui teritoriu pe care autoarea îl cartografiază obsesiv şi minuțios.” (Bogdan-Alexandru Stănescu) „Interior zero cartografiază zona sinistră dintre noi. Orice apropiere se preschimbă numaidecât în strâmtore şi abuz. Oameniii sunt aici meschini ori egoişti ori amândouă. De aceea, nicio comuniune nu este posibilă. Lavinia Branişte surprinde tragicul acesta – de tip dostoievskian, mi se pare – nu în expresia sa monumentală, ca un Ivan Karamazov revoltat, ci în tot felul de... nimicuri . Părerea mea este că tocmai aceste mici scene de interior, faptele banale care se succedă implacabil, dau forţa de convingere pe care o are cartea.” (Ovidiu Pop)

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4/5

Cartea Pricoliciului by Adina Popescu , Amalia Dulhan (Illustrator)

Marele Premiu al concursului de creaţie literară Trofeul Arthur 2013. Cartea Pricoliciului este cel dintâi volum al trilogiei fantastice O istorie secretă a Ţării Vampirilor, o serie ce îşi propune să salveze mituri şi personaje sortite să dispară, dacă nu sunt povestite. Uitaţi de toată lumea, Greuceanu, Pipăruş-Petru, Sfânta Miercuri, Ileana Cosânzeana sau Zmeul Tase au o Marele Premiu al concursului de creaţie literară Trofeul Arthur 2013. Cartea Pricoliciului este cel dintâi volum al trilogiei fantastice O istorie secretă a Ţării Vampirilor, o serie ce îşi propune să salveze mituri şi personaje sortite să dispară, dacă nu sunt povestite. Uitaţi de toată lumea, Greuceanu, Pipăruş-Petru, Sfânta Miercuri, Ileana Cosânzeana sau Zmeul Tase au o viaţă banală care numai de basm nu este. În Ţara Vampirilor, vampirii sunt scoşi în afara legii, Împăraţii confundă prezentul cu trecutul, iar Preşedintele e speriat de o carte cu pagini albe care-i ameninţă viitorul. Într-o lume în care se face contrabandă cu Apă Vie şi nu mai există fericire până la adânci bătrâneţi, Pricoliciul a uitat cine este. Nevoit să-şi părăsească grota, porneşte la drum şi ajunge să fie implicat în poveştile altora – iar în cele din urmă descoperă că nu poate scăpa de Sfârşit decât dacă înţelege în ce măsură se întreţese povestea lui cu iţele Basmului.

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5/5

La petite communiste qui ne souriait jamais by Lola Lafon

Parce qu’elle est fascinée par le destin de la miraculeuse petite gymnaste roumaine de quatorze ans apparue aux jo de Montréal en 1976 pour mettre à mal guerres froides, ordinateurs et records au point d’accéder au statut de mythe planétaire, la narratrice de ce roman entreprend de raconter ce qu’elle imagine de l’expérience que vécut cette prodigieuse fillette, symbole d’ Parce qu’elle est fascinée par le destin de la miraculeuse petite gymnaste roumaine de quatorze ans apparue aux jo de Montréal en 1976 pour mettre à mal guerres froides, ordinateurs et records au point d’accéder au statut de mythe planétaire, la narratrice de ce roman entreprend de raconter ce qu’elle imagine de l’expérience que vécut cette prodigieuse fillette, symbole d’une Europe révolue, venue, par la seule pureté de ses gestes, incarner aux yeux désabusés du monde le rêve d’une enfance éternelle. Mais quelle version retenir du parcours de cette petite communiste qui ne souriait jamais et qui voltigea, d’Est en Ouest, devant ses juges, sportifs, politiques ou médiatiques, entre adoration des foules et manipulations étatiques ? Mimétique de l’audace féerique des figures jadis tracées au ciel de la compétition par une simple enfant, le romanacrobate de Lola Lafon, plus proche de la légende d’Icare que de la mythologie des “dieux du stade”, rend l’hommage d’une fiction inspirée à celle-là, qui, d’un coup de pied à la lune, a ravagé le chemin rétréci qu’on réserve aux petites filles, ces petites filles de l’été 1976 qui, grâce à elle, ont rêvé de s’élancer dans le vide, les abdos serrés et la peau nue.

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3.1/5

A Concise History of Romania by Keith Hitchins

Spanning a period of 2000 years from the Roman conquest of Dacia to the present day, A Concise History of Romania traces the development of a unique nation situated on the border between East and West. In this illuminating new history, Keith Hitchins explores Romania's struggle to find its place amidst two diverse societies: one governed by Eastern orthodox tradition, spir Spanning a period of 2000 years from the Roman conquest of Dacia to the present day, A Concise History of Romania traces the development of a unique nation situated on the border between East and West. In this illuminating new history, Keith Hitchins explores Romania's struggle to find its place amidst two diverse societies: one governed by Eastern orthodox tradition, spirituality and agriculture and the other by Western rationalism, experimentation and capitalism. The book charts Romania's advancement through five significant phases of its history: medieval, early modern, modern and finally the nation's 'return to Europe'; evaluating all the while Romania's part in European politics, economic and social change, intellectual and cultural renewals and international entanglements. This is a fascinating history of an East European nation; one which sheds new light on the complex evolution of the Romanians and the identity they have successfully crafted from a unique synthesis of traditions.

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4.7/5

Despărţirea de Bucureşti: o povestire by Victor Ieronim Stoichiță , Mona Antohi (trad.)

Cu Despărţirea de Bucureşti, cunoscutul istoric de artă Victor Ieronim Stoichiţă îşi face debutul strălucit în proza literară, evocând, într-o „povestire“ scrisă la persoana întâi, viaţa din România deceniilor şase şi şapte ale secolului trecut, lumea în care generaţia naratorului anonim şi-a petrecut copilăria şi tinereţea. Este o lume alcătuită din amintirile celor mari Cu Despărţirea de Bucureşti, cunoscutul istoric de artă Victor Ieronim Stoichiţă îşi face debutul strălucit în proza literară, evocând, într-o „povestire“ scrisă la persoana întâi, viaţa din România deceniilor şase şi şapte ale secolului trecut, lumea în care generaţia naratorului anonim şi-a petrecut copilăria şi tinereţea. Este o lume alcătuită din amintirile celor mari şi din descoperirile celor mici, o lume bântuită de spaime şi vorbind în şoaptă, care şi-a pierdut rosturile dinainte şi încearcă să supravieţuiască pustiului „vremurilor noi“ de după război. O galerie de personaje memorabile, puse în situaţii care mai de care mai grăitoare, trimite totuşi cu gândul la subtilul cititor de tablouri care este autorul. Mai presus de toate însă, ritmate de evenimentele epocii, crâmpeie din viaţa cotidiană a unei familii prinse sub tăvălugul istoriei sau din frământările tinerilor ce-şi caută un drum în viaţă în acele vremi se perindă prin faţa cititorului de azi, amintindu-i felul în care un timp necruţător a ştiut să frângă atâtea şi atâtea destine.

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3/5

Dracula by Bram Stoker , Nina Auerbach (Editor) , Kara Shallenberg (Narrator) , David J. Skal (Editor)

You can find an alternative cover edition for this ISBN here and here. A rich selection of background and source materials is provided in three areas: Contexts includes probable inspirations for Dracula in the earlier works of James Malcolm Rymer and Emily Gerard. Also included are a discussion of Stoker's working notes for the novel and "Dracula's Guest," the original open You can find an alternative cover edition for this ISBN here and here. A rich selection of background and source materials is provided in three areas: Contexts includes probable inspirations for Dracula in the earlier works of James Malcolm Rymer and Emily Gerard. Also included are a discussion of Stoker's working notes for the novel and "Dracula's Guest," the original opening chapter to Dracula. Reviews and Reactions reprints five early reviews of the novel. "Dramatic and Film Variations" focuses on theater and film adaptations of Dracula, two indications of the novel's unwavering appeal. David J. Skal, Gregory A. Waller, and Nina Auerbach offer their varied perspectives. Checklists of both dramatic and film adaptations are included. Criticism collects seven theoretical interpretations of Dracula by Phyllis A. Roth, Carol A. Senf, Franco Moretti, Christopher Craft, Bram Dijkstra, Stephen D. Arata, and Talia Schaffer. A Chronology and a Selected Bibliography are included.

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3.1/5

The Land of Green Plums by Herta Müller , Michael Hofmann (Translator)

Set in Romania at the height of Ceausescu's reign of terror, this haunting novel tells the story of a group of young students, each of whom has left the impoverished provinces in search of better prospects in the city. It is a profound and powerful look at a totalitarian state which comes to inhabit every aspect of life; to the extent that everyone, even the strongest, mus Set in Romania at the height of Ceausescu's reign of terror, this haunting novel tells the story of a group of young students, each of whom has left the impoverished provinces in search of better prospects in the city. It is a profound and powerful look at a totalitarian state which comes to inhabit every aspect of life; to the extent that everyone, even the strongest, must either bend to the oppressors, or resist them and perish.

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4.5/5

The Appointment by Herta Müller , Michael Hulse (Translation) , Philip Boehm (Translation)

From the winner of the IMPAC Award and the Nobel Prize, a fierce novel about a young Romanian woman's discovery of betrayal in the most intimate reaches of her life "I've been summoned. Thursday, ten sharp." Thus begins one day in the life of a young clothing-factory worker during Ceaucescu's totalitarian regime. She has been questioned before; this time, she believes, will From the winner of the IMPAC Award and the Nobel Prize, a fierce novel about a young Romanian woman's discovery of betrayal in the most intimate reaches of her life "I've been summoned. Thursday, ten sharp." Thus begins one day in the life of a young clothing-factory worker during Ceaucescu's totalitarian regime. She has been questioned before; this time, she believes, will be worse. Her crime? Sewing notes into the linings of men's suits bound for Italy. "Marry me," the notes say, with her name and address. Anything to get out of the country. As she rides the tram to her interrogation, her thoughts stray to her friend Lilli, shot trying to flee to Hungary, to her grandparents, deported after her first husband informed on them, to Major Albu, her interrogator, who begins each session with a wet kiss on her fingers, and to Paul, her lover, her one source of trust, despite his constant drunkenness. In her distraction, she misses her stop to find herself on an unfamiliar street. And what she discovers there makes her fear of the appointment pale by comparison. Herta Müller pitilessly renders the humiliating terrors of a crushing regime. Bone-spare and intense, The Appointment confirms her standing as one of Europe's greatest writers.

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4.1/5

Night by Elie Wiesel , Marion Wiesel (Translator) , François Mauriac (Foreword)

Born in the town of Sighet, Transylvania, Elie Wiesel was a teenager when he and his family were taken from their home in 1944 to Auschwitz concentration camp, and then to Buchenwald. Night is the terrifying record of Elie Wiesel's memories of the death of his family, the death of his own innocence, and his despair as a deeply observant Jew confronting the absolute evil of Born in the town of Sighet, Transylvania, Elie Wiesel was a teenager when he and his family were taken from their home in 1944 to Auschwitz concentration camp, and then to Buchenwald. Night is the terrifying record of Elie Wiesel's memories of the death of his family, the death of his own innocence, and his despair as a deeply observant Jew confronting the absolute evil of man. This new translation by his wife and most frequent translator, Marion Wiesel, corrects important details and presents the most accurate rendering in English of Elie Wiesel's testimony to what happened in the camps and of his unforgettable message that this horror must never be allowed to happen again.

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3.2/5

The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova

To you, perceptive reader, I bequeath my history....Late one night, exploring her father's library, a young woman finds an ancient book and a cache of yellowing letters. The letters are all addressed to "My dear and unfortunate successor," and they plunge her into a world she never dreamed of, a labyrinth where the secrets of her father's past and her mother's mysterious f To you, perceptive reader, I bequeath my history....Late one night, exploring her father's library, a young woman finds an ancient book and a cache of yellowing letters. The letters are all addressed to "My dear and unfortunate successor," and they plunge her into a world she never dreamed of, a labyrinth where the secrets of her father's past and her mother's mysterious fate connect to an inconceivable evil hidden in the depths of history. The letters provide links to one of the darkest powers that humanity has ever known and to a centuries-long quest to find the source of that darkness and wipe it out. It is a quest for the truth about Vlad the Impaler, the medieval ruler whose barbarous reign formed the basis of the legend of Dracula. Generations of historians have risked their reputations, their sanity, and even their lives to learn the truth about Vlad the Impaler and Dracula. Now one young woman must decide whether to take up this quest herself--to follow her father in a hunt that nearly brought him to ruin years ago, when he was a vibrant young scholar and her mother was still alive. What does the legend of Vlad the Impaler have to do with the modern world? Is it possible that the Dracula of myth truly existed and that he has lived on, century after century, pursuing his own unknowable ends? The answers to these questions cross time and borders, as first the father and then the daughter search for clues, from dusty Ivy League libraries to Istanbul, Budapest, and the depths of Eastern Europe. In city after city, in monasteries and archives, in letters and in secret conversations, the horrible truth emerges about Vlad the Impaler's dark reign and about a time-defying pact that may have kept his awful work alive down through the ages.

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4.5/5

The Hunger Angel by Herta Müller , Philip Boehm (Translator)

It was an icy morning in January 1945 when the patrol came for seventeen-year-old Leo Auberg to deport him to a camp in the Soviet Union. Leo would spend the next five years in a coke processing plant, shoveling coal, lugging bricks, mixing mortar, and battling the relentless calculus of hunger that governed the labor colony: one shovel load of coal is worth one gram of br It was an icy morning in January 1945 when the patrol came for seventeen-year-old Leo Auberg to deport him to a camp in the Soviet Union. Leo would spend the next five years in a coke processing plant, shoveling coal, lugging bricks, mixing mortar, and battling the relentless calculus of hunger that governed the labor colony: one shovel load of coal is worth one gram of bread. In her new novel, Nobel laureate Herta Müller calls upon her unique combination of poetic intensity and dispassionate precision to conjure the distorted world of the labor camp in all its physical and moral absurdity. She has given Leo the language to express the inexpressible, as hunger sharpens his senses into an acuity that is both hallucinatory and profound. In scene after disorienting scene, the most ordinary objects accrue tender poignancy as they acquire new purpose—a gramophone box serves as a suitcase, a handkerchief becomes a talisman, an enormous piece of casing pipe functions as a lovers' trysting place. The heart is reduced to a pump, the breath mechanized to the rhythm of a swinging shovel, and coal, sand, and snow have a will of their own. Hunger becomes an insatiable angel who haunts the camp day and night, but also a bare-knuckled sparring partner, delivering blows that keep Leo feeling the rawest connection to life. Müller has distilled Leo's struggle into words of breathtaking intensity that take us on a journey far beyond the Gulag and into the depths of one man's soul.

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4.8/5

The Passport by Herta Müller , Martin Chalmers (Translator)

From the winner of the 2009 Nobel Prize in Literature “[The Passport] has the same clipped prose cadences as Nadirs, this time applied to evoke the trapped mentality of a man so desperate for freedom that he views everything through a temporal lens, like a prisoner staring at a calendar in his cell.”—Wall Street Journal “A swift, stinging narrative, fable-like in its stoic c From the winner of the 2009 Nobel Prize in Literature “[The Passport] has the same clipped prose cadences as Nadirs, this time applied to evoke the trapped mentality of a man so desperate for freedom that he views everything through a temporal lens, like a prisoner staring at a calendar in his cell.”—Wall Street Journal “A swift, stinging narrative, fable-like in its stoic concision and painterly detail.”—The Philadelphia Inquirer The Passport is a beautiful, haunting novel whose subject is a German village in Romania caught between the stifling hopelessness of Ceausescu’s dictatorship and the glittering temptations of the West. Stories from the past are woven together with the problems Windisch, the village miller, faces after he applies for permission to migrate to West Germany. Herta Müller (Herta Mueller) describes with poetic attention the dreams and superstitions, conflicts and oppression of a forgotten region, the Banat, in the Danube Plain. In sparse, poetic language, Muller captures the forlorn plight of a trapped people.

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4.3/5

The Fox Was Ever the Hunter by Herta Müller , Philip Boehm (Translation)

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 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.

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3.1/5

On the Heights of Despair by Emil M. Cioran , Ilinca Zarifopol-Johnston (Translator)

Born of a terrible insomnia—"a dizzying lucidity which would turn even paradise into hell"—this book presents the youthful Cioran, a self-described "Nietzsche still complete with his Zarathustra, his poses, his mystical clown's tricks, a whole circus of the heights." On the Heights of Despair shows Cioran's first grappling with themes he would return to in his mature works: Born of a terrible insomnia—"a dizzying lucidity which would turn even paradise into hell"—this book presents the youthful Cioran, a self-described "Nietzsche still complete with his Zarathustra, his poses, his mystical clown's tricks, a whole circus of the heights." On the Heights of Despair shows Cioran's first grappling with themes he would return to in his mature works: despair and decay, absurdity and alienation, futility and the irrationality of existence. It also presents Cioran as a connoisseur of apocalypse, a theoretician of despair, for whom writing and philosophy both share the "lyrical virtues" that alone lead to a metaphysical revelation. "No modern writer twists the knife with Cioran's dexterity. . . . His writing . . . is informed with the bitterness of genuine compassion."—Bill Marx, Boston Phoenix "The dark, existential despair of Romanian philosopher Cioran's short meditations is paradoxically bracing and life-affirming. . . . Puts him in the company of Nietzsche and Kierkegaard."—Publishers Weekly, starred review "This is self-pity as epigram, the sort of dyspeptic pronouncement that gets most people kicked out of bed but that has kept Mr. Cioran going for the rest of his life."—Judith Shulevitz, New York Times Book Review

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4.7/5

Maitreyi by Mircea Eliade

Set in 1930s Calcutta, this is a roman á clef of remarkable intimacy. Originally published in Romanian in 1933, this semiautobiographical novel by the world renowned scholar Mircea Eliade details the passionate awakenings of Alain, an ambitious young French engineer flush with colonial pride and prejudice and full of a European fascination with the mysterious subcontinent. Set in 1930s Calcutta, this is a roman á clef of remarkable intimacy. Originally published in Romanian in 1933, this semiautobiographical novel by the world renowned scholar Mircea Eliade details the passionate awakenings of Alain, an ambitious young French engineer flush with colonial pride and prejudice and full of a European fascination with the mysterious subcontinent. Offered the hospitality of a senior Indian colleague, Alain grasps at the chance to discover the authentic India firsthand. He soon finds himself enchanted by his host's daughter, the lovely and inscrutable Maitreyi, a precocious young poet and former student of Tagore. What follows is a charming, tentative flirtation that soon, against all the proprieties and precepts of Indian society, blossoms into a love affair both impossible and ultimately tragic. This erotic passion plays itself out in Alain's thoughts long after its bitter conclusion. In hindsight he sets down the story, quoting from the diaries of his disordered days, and trying to make sense of the sad affair. A vibrantly poetic love story, Bengal Nights is also a cruel account of the wreckage left in the wake of a young man's self discovery. At once horrifying and deeply moving, Eliade's story repeats the patterns of European engagement with India even as it exposes and condemns them. Invaluable for the insight it offers into Eliade's life and thought, it is a work of great intellectual and emotional power. "Bengal Nights is forceful and harshly poignant, written with a great love of India informed by clear-eyed understanding. But do not open it if you prefer to remain unmoved by your reading matter.It is enough to make stones weep." — Literary Review Mircea Eliade (1907-1986) was the Sewell L. Avery Distinguished Service Professor in the Divinity School and the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago. Many of his scholarly works, as well as his two-volume autobiography and four-volume journal, are published by the University of Chicago Press. Translated into French in 1950, Bengal Nights was an immediate critical success. The film, Les Nuits Bengali, appeared in 1987.

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4.1/5

For Two Thousand Years by Mihail Sebastian , Philip Ó Ceallaigh (Translator)

'Absolutely, definitively alone', a young Jewish student in Romania tries to make sense of a world that has decided he doesn't belong. Spending his days walking the streets and his nights drinking and gambling, meeting revolutionaries, zealots, lovers and libertines, he adjusts his eyes to the darkness that falls over Europe, and threatens to destroy him. Mihail Sebastian's 'Absolutely, definitively alone', a young Jewish student in Romania tries to make sense of a world that has decided he doesn't belong. Spending his days walking the streets and his nights drinking and gambling, meeting revolutionaries, zealots, lovers and libertines, he adjusts his eyes to the darkness that falls over Europe, and threatens to destroy him. Mihail Sebastian's 1934 masterpiece, now translated into English for the first time, was written amid the anti-Semitism which would, by the end of the decade, force him out of his career and turn his friends and colleagues against him. For Two Thousand Years is a prescient, heart-wrenching chronicle of resilience and despair, broken layers of memory and the terrible forces of history.

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3.3/5

Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Marillier

High in the Transylvanian woods, at the castle Piscul Draculi, live five daughters and their doting father. It's an idyllic life for Jena, the second eldest, who spends her time exploring the mysterious forest with her constant companion, a most unusual frog. But best by far is the castle's hidden portal, known only to the sisters. Every Full Moon, they alone can pass thro High in the Transylvanian woods, at the castle Piscul Draculi, live five daughters and their doting father. It's an idyllic life for Jena, the second eldest, who spends her time exploring the mysterious forest with her constant companion, a most unusual frog. But best by far is the castle's hidden portal, known only to the sisters. Every Full Moon, they alone can pass through it into the enchanted world of the Other Kingdom. There they dance through the night with the fey creatures of this magical realm. But their peace is shattered when Father falls ill and must go to the southern parts to recover, for that is when cousin Cezar arrives. Though he's there to help the girls survive the brutal winter, Jena suspects he has darker motives in store. Meanwhile, Jena's sister has fallen in love with a dangerous creature of the Other Kingdom--an impossible union it's up to Jena to stop. When Cezar's grip of power begins to tighten, at stake is everything Jena loves: her home, her family, and the Other Kingdom she has come to cherish. To save her world, Jena will be tested in ways she can't imagine--tests of trust, strength, and true love.

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3.2/5

Along The Enchanted Way: A Romanian Story by William Blacker

When William Blacker first crossed the snow-bound passes of northern Romania, he stumbled upon an almost medieval world. There, for many years he lived side by side with the country people, a life ruled by the slow cycle of the seasons, far away from the frantic rush of the modern world. In spring as the pear trees blossomed he ploughed with horses, in summer he scythed th When William Blacker first crossed the snow-bound passes of northern Romania, he stumbled upon an almost medieval world. There, for many years he lived side by side with the country people, a life ruled by the slow cycle of the seasons, far away from the frantic rush of the modern world. In spring as the pear trees blossomed he ploughed with horses, in summer he scythed the hay meadows and in the freezing winters gathered wood by sleigh from the forest. From sheepfolds harried by wolves, to courting expeditions in the snow, he experienced the traditional way of life to the full, and became accepted into a community who treated him as one of their own. But Blacker was also intrigued by the Gypsies, those dark, foot-loose strangers of spell-binding allure who he saw passing through the village. Locals warned him to stay clear but he fell in love and there followed a bitter struggle. Change is now coming to rural Romania, and William Blacker's adventures will soon be part of its history. From his early carefree days tramping the hills of Transylvania, to the book's poignant ending, Along the Enchanted Way transports us back to a magical country world most of us thought had vanished long ago.

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3.8/5

Pădurea spânzuraţilor by Liviu Rebreanu

«Ceea ce constituie în Pădurea spânzuraţilor un „act de dezertare", ar fi apreciat, după 50 de ani, ca un „fapt de mutilare", iar documentul de acuzare ar învinui statul, adică aici monarhia bicefală austro-ungară, de opresiune morală şi psihologică asupra propriilor cetăţeni. Bineînţeles că situaţia explicită ficţional din Pădurea Spânzuraţilor poate avea în realitate dif «Ceea ce constituie în Pădurea spânzuraţilor un „act de dezertare", ar fi apreciat, după 50 de ani, ca un „fapt de mutilare", iar documentul de acuzare ar învinui statul, adică aici monarhia bicefală austro-ungară, de opresiune morală şi psihologică asupra propriilor cetăţeni. Bineînţeles că situaţia explicită ficţional din Pădurea Spânzuraţilor poate avea în realitate diferite distribuţii şi orice om, fie el rus, maghiar, austriac ori german, cetăţean al altui stat, pus să lupte împotriva statului naţional al ruşilor, maghiarilor, austriecilor ori germanilor ar trece prin aceleaşi destrucţii psiho­logice şi frustrări de identitate naţională, ca până la urmă să asculte de glasul sângelui şi să treacă la ai săi.» Aureliu GOCI

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3.4/5

In Europe's Shadow: Two Cold Wars and a Thirty-Year Journey Through Romania and Beyond by Robert D. Kaplan

From the New York Times bestselling author Robert D. Kaplan, named one of the world’s Top 100 Global Thinkers by Foreign Policy magazine, comes a riveting journey through one of Europe’s frontier countries—and a potent examination of the forces that will determine Europe’s fate in the postmodern age. Robert Kaplan first visited Romania in the 1970s, when he was a young jo From the New York Times bestselling author Robert D. Kaplan, named one of the world’s Top 100 Global Thinkers by Foreign Policy magazine, comes a riveting journey through one of Europe’s frontier countries—and a potent examination of the forces that will determine Europe’s fate in the postmodern age. Robert Kaplan first visited Romania in the 1970s, when he was a young journalist and the country was a bleak Communist backwater. It was one of the darkest corners of Europe, but few Westerners were paying attention. What ensued was a lifelong obsession with a critical, often overlooked country—a country that, today, is key to understanding the current threat that Russia poses to Europe. In Europe’s Shadow is a vivid blend of memoir, travelogue, journalism, and history, a masterly work thirty years in the making—the story of a journalist coming of age, and a country struggling to do the same. Through the lens of one country, Kaplan examines larger questions of geography, imperialism, the role of fate in international relations, the Cold War, the Holocaust, and more. Here Kaplan illuminates the fusion of the Latin West and the Greek East that created Romania, the country that gave rise to Ion Antonescu, Hitler’s chief foreign accomplice during World War II, and the country that was home to the most brutal strain of Communism under Nicolae Ceaușescu. Romania past and present are rendered in cinematic prose: the ashen faces of citizens waiting in bread lines in Cold War–era Bucharest; the Bărăgan Steppe, laid bare by centuries of foreign invasion; the grim labor camps of the Black Sea Canal; the majestic Gothic church spires of Transylvania and Maramureş. Kaplan finds himself in dialogue with the great thinkers of the past, and with the Romanians of today, the philosophers, priests, and politicians—those who struggle to keep the flame of humanism alive in the era of a resurgent Russia. Upon his return to Romania in 2013 and 2014, Kaplan found the country transformed yet again—now a traveler’s destination shaped by Western tastes, yet still emerging from the long shadows of Hitler and Stalin. In Europe’s Shadow is the story of an ideological and geographic frontier—and the book you must read in order to truly understand the crisis with Russia, and within Europe itself. Praise for In Europe’s Shadow “[A] haunting yet ultimately optimistic examination of the human condition as found in Romania . . . Kaplan’s account of the centuries leading up to the most turbulent of all—the twentieth—is both sweeping and replete with alluring detail.”—The New York Times Book Review “A serious yet impassioned survey of Romania . . . [Kaplan’s] method is that of a foreign correspondent, firing off dispatches from the South China Sea to North Yemen to the darkest corners of Eastern Europe. . . . Kaplan is a regional geographer par excellence.”—The Christian Science Monitor “Kaplan’s work exemplifies rare intellectual, moral and political engagement with the political order—and disorder—of our world.”—The Huffington Post “A masterly work of important history, analysis, and prophecy about the ancient and modern rise of Romania as a roundabout between Russia and Europe . . . I learned something new on every page.”—Tom Brokaw “A favorite of mine for years, Robert D. Kaplan is a thoughtful and insight-driven historian who writes clear and compelling prose, but what I like most about him is his political sophistication. A true pleasure for the reader.”—Alan Furst

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