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Widows: A Novel Reprint Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
ISBN-13: 978-1583224830
ISBN-10: 1583224831
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Set in occupied Greece during WW II, Dorfman's first novel to be translated into English limns the women of a village whose men have been imprisoned and killed as conspirators. Confronting their oppressors, the widows stubbornly resist their power and what it represents. "His beautifully understated tale is as powerful as it is moving," PW remarked.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Spanish

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Seven Stories Press; Reprint edition (July 9, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1583224831
  • ISBN-13: 978-1583224830
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.4 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,888,765 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Loves the View VINE VOICE on September 5, 2011
Format: Paperback
This story takes place in an unnamed Greek village during WW2. The men of this village, (who presumably resisted the Nazis and their local collaborators) have been arrested or otherwise disappeared. Disfigured and unidentifiable bodies wash up on the shore of the river where the women wash clothes. The women follow the lead of Sofia Angelos, claiming the bodies are their spouses and pushing the military officer in charge of "pacifying" their village for a decent family burial.

The European Nazi setting was chosen in hopes that this book would pass censors and be available in Pinochet's Chile, the actual setting envisioned by the author. For further disguise, there was to be an original European (Danish? French?) publication and a later Spanish translation by a prominent South American writer.

The book does not live up to its idea. Too much is vague, unclear or, for its length, extraneous. First, the switch from third to a first person (and back again) seemed to be unnecessary styling; Figuring out the identity of the first person narrator was distracting. In proportion to the short text, there was too much time spent on Emmanuel and his girlfriend, and they (particularly she) are not that germane to the story. The final meeting of Sofia (Grandma) and the Captain and the thoughts (a jumble of maybe thought and thought dialog between Alexis and his Grandmother) are sketchy. Sofia says her husband wasn't involved in politics. It doesn't ring true, but there are only vague clues as to why the men of this town were targets for the authorities. The gap between Chapters 7 and 8 is disappointing and makes for a unsatisfyingly vague ending.

The idea is very good.
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