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Title The encyclopaedia of good reasons / Monica Cantieni ; translated by Donal McLaughlin.
Author Cantieni, Monica, 1965- author.
Publication London : Seagull Books, 2014.
Description 228 pages ; 22 cm
Summary 'My father bought me from the council for 365 francs.' The narrator in Monica Cantieni's novel is a young girl, an immigrant to Switzerland whose adoption is still to be finalized. The girl is learning German--the language spoken in her new community--and collects words and phrases in matchboxes. Her narrative, infused with a child's uncannily perceptive idea of the world, moves between her days in the orphanage and her new life with her adoptive parents. Set in the time of the crucial 1970 Swiss referendum on immigration, we encounter a host of colourful characters who struggle to make Switzerland their home: Eli, the Spanish bricklayer; Toni, the Italian factory worker with film-star looks; Madame Jelisaweta, the Yugoslav hairdresser; and Milena, the mysterious girl in the wardrobe. The tormented relationship between her new parents haunts her days as she creates with her adoptive grandfather Tat the 'Encyclopaedia of Good Reasons' with which, one hopes, she will set out on her life's journey. A book with a very warm heart, rarely has a young girl's narrative been at once so uproariously hilarious and so deeply moving, so rooted in the issues of today's Europe and so universal.
Subject Orphans -- Fiction.
Adoptees -- Fiction.
Switzerland -- Fiction.
Addl. Author McLaughlin, Donal, 1961- translator.
Addl. Title Gr√ľnschnabel. English
ISBN 9780857421845 :

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