A Thousand Peaceful Cities

by Jerzy Pilch

$14.95

Fiction from Open Letter Books
Translated from Polish

A comic gem, Jerzy Pilch’s A Thousand Peaceful Citiestakes place in 1963, in the latter days of the Polish post-Stalinist “thaw.” The narrator, Jerzyk (“little Jerzy”), is a teenager who is keenly interested in his father, a retired postal administrator, and his father’s closest friend, Mr. Traba, a failed Lutheran clergyman, alcoholic, and would-be Polish insurrectionist. One drunken afternoon, Mr. Traba and the narrator’s father decide to take charge of their lives and do one final good turn for humanity: travel to distant Warsaw and assassinate the de facto Polish head of state, First Secretary of the Polish United Workers’ Party, Wladyslaw Gomulka—assassinating Mao Tse-tung, after all, would be impractical. And they decide to involve Jerzyk in their scheme…

SKU: 123 Category:

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Open Letter Books
novel | paperback| 148 pages
978-1-934824-27-6

“If laughter actually is the best medicine, fortunate readers of this wonderful novel will surely enjoy perfect health for the rest of their days.”
Kirkus Reviews

Translated from the Polish by David Frick

About the Author: Jerzy Pilch is one of Poland’s most important contemporary writers and journalists. In addition to his long-running satirical newspaper column, Pilch has published several novels, and has been nominated for Poland’s prestigious NIKE Literary Award four times; he finally won the Award in 2001 for The Mighty Angel. His novels have been translated into numerous languages.

“With his latest, Pilch masterfully negotiates sentiment with a clear-eyed vision of his autobiographical narrator’s shortcomings and disappointments, suggesting a Dubliners set in Krakow.”
Publishers Weekly (starred)

“Pilch’s antic sensibility confirms that he is the compatriot of Witold Gombrowicz, the Polish maestro of absurdist pranks. But readers with a taste for the fermented Irish blarney of Flann O’Brien, Samuel Beckett, and John Kennedy Toole might also savor Pilch.”
B&N Review

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