The Cellist of Sarajevo

Front Cover
Penguin, 2008 - Fiction - 235 pages
A spare and haunting, wise and beautiful novel about the endurance of the human spirit and the subtle ways individuals reclaim their humanity in a city ravaged by war. In a city under siege, four people whose lives have been upended are ultimately reminded of what it is to be human. From his window, a musician sees twenty-two of his friends and neighbors waiting in a breadline. Then, in a flash, they are killed by a mortar attack. In an act of defiance, the man picks up his cello and decides to play at the site of the shelling for twenty-two days, honoring their memory. Elsewhere, a young man leaves home to collect drinking water for his family and, in the face of danger, must weigh the value of generosity against selfish survivalism. A third man, older, sets off in search of bread and distraction and instead runs into a long-ago friend who reminds him of the city he thought he had lost, and the man he once was. As both men are drawn into the orbit of cello music, a fourth characteraa young woman, a sniperaholds the fate of the cellist in her hands. As she protects him with her life, her own army prepares to challenge the kind of person she has become. A novel of great intensity and power, and inspired by a true story, The Cellist of Sarajevo poignantly explores how war can change oneas definition of humanity, the effect of music on our emotional endurance, and how a romance with the rituals of daily life can itself be a form of resistance.
 

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
72
4 stars
55
3 stars
12
2 stars
3
1 star
2

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Fliss88 - www.librarything.com

A different view of war, taken from the streets of Sarajevo. It's a personal view showing how war affects it's ordinary civilians. Chapters rotate between three main characters and we see all three ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - abycats - LibraryThing

This is a slight book featuring only a few characters but it's stayed with me enough so that I almost picked it as my first suggestions for a monthly read. Based on real facts, a musician in a town ... Read full review

All 4 reviews »

Contents

Section 1
3
Section 2
13
Section 3
23
Section 4
37
Section 5
55
Section 6
65
Section 7
80
Section 8
97
Section 12
155
Section 13
165
Section 14
181
Section 15
194
Section 16
205
Section 17
217
Section 18
222
Section 19
226

Section 9
107
Section 10
120
Section 11
137
Section 20
233
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2008)

Steven Galloway was born on July 13, 1975 in Vancouver, Canada. After completing his education, he became a professor at the University of British Columbia and worked his way up to being the acting chair of the Creative Writing Program. He is widely known for his international bestseller, The Cellist of Sarajevo, which made the iBooks bestseller list in 2017.

Bibliographic information