“A Girl in Exile” at Iranian bookstores

July 6, 2022 - 18:43

TEHRAN – “A Girl in Exile”, a novel by Albanian writer Ismail Kadare, has been published in Persian by Chatrang in Tehran.

First published in Albanian in 2009, the book has been translated into Persian by Mahmud Gudarzi.

The story is set among the bureaucratic machinery of Albania's 1945-1991 dictatorship. While waiting to hear whether his newest play will be approved for production, playwright Rudian Stefa is called in for questioning by the Party Committee. A girl - Linda B. - has been found dead, with a signed copy of his latest book in her possession.

He soon learns that Linda’s family, considered suspect, was exiled to a small town far from the capital, and that she committed suicide. 

Under the influence of a paranoid regime, Rudian finds himself swept along on a surreal quest to discover what really happened to Linda B. Through layers of intrigue, her story gradually unfolds: how she loved Rudian from a distance, and the risks she was prepared to take so that she could get close to him. 

He becomes captivated by her story, and disturbed at how he might be culpable for her fate.

“A Girl in Exile” is a stunning, deeply affecting portrait of life and love under surveillance, infused with myth, wry humor, and the absurdity of a paranoid regime.

Kadare has been a leading literary figure in Albania since the 1960s. He focused on short stories until the publication of his first novel, “The General of the Dead Army”. 

In 1996, he became a lifetime member of the Academy of Moral and Political Sciences of France. 

He has been honored with major literary awards, including the Prix Mondial Cino Del Duca, Man Booker International Prize and Prince of Asturias Award of Arts.

Kadare has been mentioned as a possible recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature several times. His works have been published in about 30 languages.

Photo: A combination photo shows Albanian novelist Ismail Kadare and the front cover of the Persian edition of his book “A Girl in Exile”.

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