Nine

Nine

Paperback

By (author) Andrzej Stasiuk, Translated by Bill Johnston

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  • Publisher: VINTAGE
  • Format: Paperback | 240 pages
  • Dimensions: 128mm x 196mm x 16mm | 181g
  • Publication date: 3 April 2008
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 009946862X
  • ISBN 13: 9780099468622
  • Sales rank: 353,369

Product description

Pawel, a young Polish businessman, is in trouble; in debt to loan sharks his only hope lies with former friends, many of whom are now prominent in Warsaw's drug-dealing underground. Embarking on a desperate fool's-gold chase through the city's grimy apartments and creaking transport system Pawel struggles for survival as part of a generation adrift in moral space and disconnected from family, neighbours and friends. Nine is a brilliant novel from one of Europe's finest writers: both an existential crime novel and a major work of literature.

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Author information

Born in Warsaw in 1960, Andrzej Stasiuk has risen to become one of the most important and interesting writers at work in Eastern Europe today. Author of over a dozen books and winner of many prizes, he came to writing in an unusual way: in the early 1980s, he deserted the army and spent a year and a half in prison for it. Afterwards he wrote a collection of short stories, The Walls of Hebron, about his experience, which became a huge success. He and his wife, Monika Sznajderman, run a small publishing house in Czarne.

Review quote

"One of a number of cult writers to have emerged from post-communist central Europe... Stasiuk's prose has the easy flow of Kerouac's" New Statesman "Politicises the everyday so compellingly that it calls to mind the greatest work of John McGahern" -- Joseph O'Connor "A blistering existential thriller of dodgy deals and foresaken ideals" -- Boyd Tonkin Independent "Harnessing the shape-shifting, paranoid ambience of Kafka, not as a means to pass comment on totalitarianism but on the void (political and social) created in its wake ... impressive for the quality of its prose (Stasiuk is fantastic at listless, urban desolation)...a rewarding despatch from a country undergoing enormous change" -- Claire Allfree Metro "Paints a vivid and disturbing picture of contemporary life in Poland...offers a sobering vision of the new face of central Europe in a narrative that is at once hallucinatory, haunting and abject" Publishers Weekly

Back cover copy

A "New York Times" Editors' Choice When Pawel wakes up in his trashed apartment, he has three days to raise the money he owes to loan sharks and only two friends to whom he can turn. But first he must find them in the hostile landscape that is post-Communist Warsaw. "A fool's-gold chase through Warsaw--the bus terminals, the railway stations, the shopping centers and the grubby apartments. Like the Dublin of Joyce's "Ulysses," the city itself becomes a central personality of the book . . . Stasiuk's prose soars over the city. He sees as a helicopter might, and illuminates stray lives with empathy and verve . . . I caught a flavor of Hamsun, Sartre, Genet and Kafka in Stasiuk's scalpel-like but evocative writing. "Nine" feels like a major work of modern fiction, a portrait of an uprooted and restless generation of Eastern Europeans and of a city resigned to the fact that post-Communism is not quite as advertised."--Irvine Welsh, "The New York Times Book Review" ANDRZEJ STASIUK deserted from the Polish army under Communism, was sent to prison, and there began his writing career. In 2005 he won the NIKE Award, Poland's most important literary prize. He lives in the Carpathian Mountains.