Where You Come From

Longlist, National Book Awards 2022 for Translated Literature

ISBN 9781951142759
Tin House Books
Saša Stanišić

Saša Stanišić was born in Višegrad (Yugoslavia) in 1978 and has lived in Germany since 1992. His debut novel, How the Soldier Repairs the Gramophone, was translated into 31 languages; Before the Feast was a bestseller and won the renowned Leipzig Book Fair Prize. More about this author >

Damion Searls

Damion Searls has translated several books and a libretto by Jon Fosse—Septology, Melancholy (co-translated with Grethe Kvernes), Aliss at the Fire, Morning and Evening (novel and libretto), and Scenes from a Childhood—and books by many other classic modern writers, including Proust, Rilke, Nietzsche, Walser, Bachmann, Jelinek, Modiano, and Uwe Johnson. More about this author >

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Translated from the German 

From the publisher:

In August, 1992, a boy and his mother flee the war in Yugoslavia and arrive in Germany. Six months later, the boy’s father joins them, bringing a brown suitcase, insomnia, and a scar on his thigh. Saša Stanišic’s Where You Come From is a novel about this family, whose world is uprooted and remade by war: their history, their life before the conflict, and the years that followed their escape as they created a new life in a new country.

Blending autofiction, fable, and choose-your-own-adventure, Where You Come From is set in a village where only thirteen people remain, in lost and made-up memories, in coincidences, in choices, and in a dragons’ den. Translated by Damion Searls, it’s a novel about homelands, both remembered and imagined, lost and found. A book that playfully twists form and genre with wit and heart to explore questions that lie inside all of us: about language and shame, about arrival and making it just in time, about luck and death, about what role our origins and memories play in our lives.

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