These incandescent pages give us one fraught, momentous day in the life of Baruch Kotler, a Soviet Jewish dissident who now finds himself a disgraced Israeli politician. When he refuses to back down from a contrary but principled stand regarding the settlements in the West Bank, his political opponents expose his affair with a mistress decades his junior, and the besieged couple escapes to Yalta, the faded Crimean resort of Kotler's youth.
Summer 1978. Brezhnev sits like a stone in the Kremlin, Israel and Egypt are inching towards peace, and in the bustling, polyglot streets of Rome, strange new creatures have appeared: Soviet Jews who have escaped to freedom through a crack in the Iron Curtain. Among the thousands who have landed in Italy to secure visas for new lives in the West are the members of the Krasnansky family - three generations of Russian Jews.
"Excellent Character study -don't expect a plot"
David Bezmozgis was born in Latvia in 1973 and emigrated to Canada in 1980. His debut story collection, Natasha and Other Stories, which includes his New Yorker story "Tapka", was published last year. His most recent story for the magazine, "The Russian Riviera", appeared in the May 30th issue. He is currently at work on a novel and on a feature film.