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D a sweeping heartbreaking history of his native country It is a story full of many Hemons of course his parents sister uncles cousins and also of German occupying forces Yugoslav partisans royalist Serb collaborators singing Ukrainians and a few befuddled Canadians My Parents is Hemon at his very best grounded in stories lovingly polished by retelling but making them exhilarating and fresh in writing summoning unexpected laughs in the midst of the heartbreaking narratives This Does Not Belong to You meanwhile is the exhilarating freewheeling. Uniuely designed and bound the two segments of this book are upside down to each other To read the next you have to turn the book over and begin at the back which after you have made the turn is now the frontThis unusual presentation serves to bind the sections to each other but also to emphasize the separate character of each section Hemon s biography of his parents is lovingly told each chapter focusing on one part of their shared lives their individual biographies their attitudes toward family food occupation music literature and the way all these things were influenced by the former nation of Yugoslavia and by the horrible times of war in BosniaIn the other section of the book Hemon has a series of short essays some of them very short all of them pondering the meaning of memory So much of what he writes is classic young boy adventure not so different from Tom Sawyer But as with his telling of his parents the reader knows the tragedy and grief that lurks just around the cornerHemon is an emigre from Bosnia himself Yet he writes so beautifully and skillfully in English If you haven t read any of his books it s time to start Her Small-Town Hero you have to turn the book over and begin at the back which after Red Tail (Travis Trilogy you have made the turn is now the frontThis unusual presentation serves to bind the sections to each other but also to emphasize the separate character of each section Hemon s biography of his parents is lovingly told each chapter focusing on one part of their shared lives their individual biographies their attitudes toward family food occupation music literature and the way all these things were influenced by the former nation of Yugoslavia and by the horrible times of war in BosniaIn the other section of the book Hemon has a series of short essays some of them very short all of them pondering the meaning of memory So much of what he writes is classic Promises in Tumble Creek young boy adventure not so different from Tom Sawyer But as with his telling of his parents the reader knows the tragedy and grief that lurks just around the cornerHemon is an emigre from Bosnia himself Yet he writes so beautifully and skillfully in English If Mischief and Marriage you haven t read any of his books it s time to start

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My Parents

Two books in one in a flip dos dos format The story of Aleksandar Hemon's parents' immigration from Sarajevo to Canada and a book of short memories of the author's family friends and childhood in SarajevoIn My Parents Aleksandar Hemon tells the story of his parents' immigration to Canada of the lives that were upended by the war in Bosnia and siege of Sarajevo and the new lives his parents were forced to build As ever with his work he portrays both the perfect intimate details his mother's lonely upbringing his father's fanatical beekeeping an. True history is always played out on a personal level Rtc

Summary My Parents

Unabashedly personal companion to My Parents a perfect dose of Hemon at his most dazzling and untempered in a series of beautifully distilled memories and observations and explosive hilarious poignant miniatures Presented dos dos with My Parents it complements and completes a major work from a major writerIn the words of Colum McCann Aleksandar Hemon is uite frankly the greatest writer of our generation Hemon has never been better than here in these pages And the moment has never been ready for his voice nor has the world ever been in need of. This biographyautobiography is divided into two halves The first is the story of Hemon s parents and their forced flight from Sarajevo to Canada in the 1990s due to the Bosnian War It s an affectionate insightful and loving account of them and their bravery and resourcefulness in adapting to a new life in a new country is vividly depicted The second half of the book is a rather rambling memoir of Hemon s own childhood and youth in Sarajevo and an exploration of the nature of memory and remembering I didn t find this part as engaging and felt it was too disjointed and impressionistic Overall however the book as a whole is enjoyable and interesting and I gained from it an added insight into what life was life in Yugoslavia before everything fell to pieces


10 thoughts on “My Parents

  1. says:

    'True history is always played out on a personal level'Rtc

  2. says:

    I recently read a 2002 article by sociologist Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak that describes a humanities education as “an uncoercive rearrangement of desires” Aleksandar Hemon's latest work fulfilled exactly this purpose for me transforming my desire to be entertained into self reflection what can I a product of consumer capitalism learn from those who were raised in another system? How do I balance nostalgia a

  3. says:

    Hemon has penned a beautiful and bittersweet ode to his parents rife with humour and honest reflection This story of his parents lives and how they were upended by the war in Bosnia resonated with me for a number of reasons Namely

  4. says:

    Aleksandar Hemon cements his reputation as one the finest writers worldwide with his compelling two part memoir My Parents An Introduction in tandem with This Does Not Belong to You He depicts his Ukrainian descended upbringing in the former Yugoslavian province of Bosnia as a socialist paradise Life as lived and expressed in music food storytelling and dozens of other ways was automatically deep with meaning and pleas

  5. says:

    Uniuely designed and bound the two segments of this book are upside down to each other To read the next you have to turn the book over and begin at the back which after you have made the turn is now the frontThis unusual presentation serves to

  6. says:

    It was a relief to finally finish this book I am a big fan of Hemon's writing his sentence structure and the power of his narrative but this book dragged It bordered on being self indulgent at times particularly the section about his parents but also his recollections of his boyhood Nothing new here really His

  7. says:

    I was expecting so much from this book but it’s dry and downright boring Why the author thinks anyone would be interested in his parents ordinary life is beyond me

  8. says:

    This biographyautobiography is divided into two halves The first is the story of Hemon’s parents and their forced flight

  9. says:

    BeautifulJust beautiful Mr Hemon has a magic with words and thoughts that brought tears to my eyes on many occasions be they of melancholy or joy Highly recommend

  10. says:

    I laughed I cried I loved this bookThe author's dazzling writing about memory blew me awayThe title is interesting specifically because what I’ve learned about memory is we all remember differently How my sister remembers our childhood is different than how I remember it Therefore the title “This Does Not Belong to You Brilliant

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