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  • Phoenix

The Tiger's Wife

Tea Obreht

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Fiction, Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)

Winner of the Orange Prize for Fiction 2011!

As Natalia and a friend travel across the former Yugoslavia, immunising villagers, the body of her grandfather turns up in a hospital in the middle of nowhere. She and her family have no idea why.

Recalling stories he told her as a child, she becomes convinced that he went in search of the Deathless Man, a mythical figure, that her grandfather claimed to have met a number of times in his life.

In her quest to find out how her grandfather, a man of hard fact and science, could turn to this fantasy, she discovers something particular about his childhood: a tiger escaped from a zoo during World War II bombings and wandered deep into the woods, settling just outside his peasant village. It terrorised the town, the devil incarnate to everyone, except for her grandfather and 'the tiger's wife'...

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Tea Obreht

Tea Obreht was born in 1985 in the former Yugoslavia, emigrating to the US in 1997. She was the youngest author on The New Yorker's Top 20 Writers under 40 List, and one of the youngest authors ever to be extracted in the magazine. Her short story, 'The Laugh', debuted in The Atlantic Fiction Issue and was then chosen for The Best American Short Stories 2010, while her short story, 'The Sentry' appeared in the Guardian Summer Fiction Issue alongside stories by Hilary Mantel and David Mitchell. Her novel, The Tiger's Wife, has won the Orange Prize for Fiction 2011. She lives in New York.