Third Place Books is elated to welcome French author Anne Berest to our Ravenna store! Berest will be discussing her novel, The Postcard, in conversation with local librarian legend Nancy Pearl. This event is free and open to the public.
Co-sponsored by the Holocaust Center for Humanity
For important updates, registration is highly recommended in advance. This event will include a public signing and time for audience Q&A. Sustain our author series by purchasing a copy of the featured book!
for this in-person event
Winner of the Choix Goncourt Prize
January, 2003. Together with the usual holiday cards, an anonymous postcard is delivered to the Berest family home. On the front, a photo of the Opéra Garnier in Paris. On the back, the names of Anne Berest’s maternal great-grandparents, Ephraïm and Emma, and their children, Noémie and Jacques—all killed at Auschwitz.
Fifteen years after the postcard is delivered, Anne, the heroine of this novel, is moved to discover who sent it and why. Aided by her chain-smoking mother, family members, friends, associates, a private detective, a graphologist, and many others, she embarks on a journey to discover the fate of the Rabinovitch family: their flight from Russia following the revolution, their journey to Latvia, Palestine, and Paris. What emerges is a moving saga that shatters long-held certainties about Anne’s family, her country, and herself.
AN INSTANT NATIONAL INDIE BESTSELLER
Named a Most Anticipated Book by the Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, Bustle, Book Riot, Vogue
Named a May ABA Indie Next Pick
Winner of the Choix Goncourt Prize, the Prix Renaudot des lycéens, and the ELLE Readers Prize
“Powerful, meticulously imagined... The Postcard (translated into a lucid and precise English by Tina Kover) takes its readers on a deep dive into one Jewish family’s history, and, inextricably, into the devastating history of the Holocaust in France... [A] powerful literary work... that contains a single grand-scale act of self-discovery and many moments of historical illumination.”
—Julie Orringer, The New York Times Book Review
“Whenever I put it down, I was pulled back by the sheer strength of Berest’s storytelling. Her ability to conjure real people in surreal circumstances while digging deeply into her own psyche is profound. My understanding of that time and my post-war family’s reaction to it runs deeper as a result.”
—Helene Siegel, Jewish Journal
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“[A] brilliant work of autofiction...The book derives enormous power from seemingly small details...This is a gut-wrenching, exceptional work.”
—Shelf Awareness (starred review)
“The story overall is poignant, tense, restless, and ultimately pivotal, as Anne not only solves her mystery, but, more importantly, gains her identity...The anguish and horror of genocide arrive with fresh impact in an absorbing personal account.”
Anne Berest is the bestselling co-author of How to Be Parisian Wherever You Are (Doubleday, 2014) and the author of a novel based on the life of French writer Françoise Sagan. With her sister Claire, she is also the author of Gabriële, a critically acclaimed biography of her great-grandmother, Gabriële Buffet-Picabia, Marcel Duchamp's lover and muse. She is the great-granddaughter of the painter Francis Picabia. For her work as a writer and prize-winning showrunner, she has been profiled in publications such as French Vogue and Haaretz newspaper. The recipient of numerous literary awards, The Postcard was a finalist for the Goncourt Prize and has been a long-selling bestseller in France.
The Postcard is translated by Tina Kover. Tina Kover's translations for Europa Editions include Antoine Compagnon's A Summer with Montaigne and Négar Djavadi's Disoriental, winner of the Albertine Prize and the Lambda Literary Award, and a finalist for both the 2020 National Book Award for Translated Literature and the PEN Translation Prize.
Nancy Pearl is a librarian, best-selling author, literary critic and the former Executive Director of the Washington Center for the Book at Seattle Public Library. Inspired by her childhood librarians, she received her MLS from the University of Michigan in 1967 and worked in the public library systems in Detroit, Tulsa, and Seattle. She is the creator of the internationally recognized community reads program, which began in 1998 as “If All Seattle Read the Same Book” and was the inspiration for the Archie McPhee “Librarian Action Figure.” Her many awards and honors include the Women’s National Book Association Award in 2004; the Librarian of the Year Award from Library Journal and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association in 2011; and the Literarian Award for Outstanding Service to the American Literary Community by the National Book Foundation in 2021. Pearl is a frequent speaker at literacy organizations, libraries, and community groups throughout the world, and comments on books regularly on KWGS, Tulsa, Oklahoma Public Radio. Book Lust with Nancy Pearl is her monthly book show on the Seattle Channel. She authored the popular Book Lust series, four titles filled with recommendations of good books to read. She is also the author of George & Lizzie (Touchstone Books, 2017) and co-authored The Writer’s Library: The Authors You Love on the Books That Changed Their Lives (HarperOne, 2020).
Want a signed edition of the featured book, but can't make it to the event? Order through our website or over the phone, and write your request for a signature or personalization in the comments field at checkout. Please call the hosting store if you're placing your order within 24 hours of the event.
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