Tuesday, August 21, 2012

2012 book 227

Goce Smilevski's Freud's Sister
Translated from the Macedonian (which is really cool for some reason), this novel centers on Sigmund Freud's sister Adolfina--one of his four sisters he failed to take with him when he left Vienna in 1938 (even though he took not only all his children/grandchildren, but his wife's family, his doctor and his family, and two housekeepers), and all four elderly women were of course gassed in the concentration camps. Nice one, Freud. Anyway, all of that is covered in the first (brief) part of the book, and then it flashes back to tell his sister's life story (and her friendships with other famous people's sisters, like Klara Klimt and Ottla Kafka) But little is known about her, so Smilevski has free rein to turn her life into what's almost a psychological study (a large chunk of the book involves a mental institution of some sort). That fits with the whole Freud thing but isn't always entertaining as a novel. Reading it reminded me, at times, of the literary theory class I took in college. This book is by no means bad, it just wasn't the book I wanted to read about Freud's sister. B.

An e-galley was provided by the publisher. This book will be released on August 28th.

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