Natalia and her grandfather are both doctors. Obreht tells the story of their relationship in (mostly) remembrances, after her grandfather dies. It's also an historical mystery of sorts, as Natalia tries to piece together the parts of her grandfather's life she doesn't know. The writing is well done with frequent swashes of magic realism throughout. Ultimately, Obreht grapples with the potent power of the past, and its effects on the present. The present in this case is the disintegration of Yugoslavia into war and destruction. This novel is on a number of best of 2011 lists, including the New York Times top ten books of the year.
Phil (Staff) (Queen's Square Library)