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An entrancing, otherworldly collection of short stories from one of Serbia's most accomplished 20th century writers, new to Penguin Modern Classics
A counter-prophet attempts the impossible to prove his power; a girl sees the hideous fate of her sister and father in a mirror bought from a gypsy; the death of a prostitute causes an unanticipated uprising; and the lives of every ordinary person since 1789 are brought to life in the almighty Encyclopaedia of the Dead. In this wide-ranging collection of stories about humanity, society and relationships, Ki? plays with the distinction between fact and fiction, horro and comedy, drawing on key influences such as James Joyce and Franz Kafka. This was Ki?'s final work, published in Serbo-Croatian in 1983.
Ki? is one of the great European writers of the post-war period - Guardian
Compulsively readable - Daily Telegraph
Fantasy chases reality and reality chases fantasy. Pirandello and Borges are not far away. But these names are intended as approximate references. Ki? is a new, original writer - Times Literary Supplement
Intense and exotic, his mysteries hint at unspeakable secrets that remain forever beyond the story-teller's grasp - Boyd Tonkin
Danilo Ki? was born in the then Kingdom of Yugoslavia in 1935. After an unsettled childhood during the Second World War, in which several of his family members were killed, Ki? studied literature at the University of Belgrade where he lived for most of his adult life. He wrote novels, short stories and poetry and went on to receive the prestigious NIN Award for his novel Pe?canik. He died in Paris in 1989.
Mark Thompson is a British historian. His published work includes Birth Certificate: The Story of Danilo Ki?.