The Mirador

The Mirador

Dreamed Memories of Irène Nømirovsky by Her Daughter

Book - 2011
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A New York Review Books Original
 
#65533;lisabeth Gille was only five when the Gestapo arrested her mother, and she grew up remembering next to nothing of her. Her mother was a figure, a name, Ir#65533;ne N#65533;mirovsky, a once popular novelist, a Russian #65533;migr#65533; from an immensely rich family, a Jew who didn't consider herself one and who even contributed to collaborationist periodicals, and a woman who died in Auschwitz because she was a Jew. To her daughter she was a tragic enigma and a stranger.

          It was to come to terms with that stranger that Gille wrote, in The Mirador, her mother's memoirs. The first part of the book, dated 1929, the year David Golder made N#65533;mirovsky famous, takes us back to her difficult childhood in Kiev and St. Petersburg. Her father is doting, her mother a beautiful monster, while Irene herself is bookish and self-absorbed. There are pogroms and riots, parties and excursions, then revolution, from which the family flees to France, a country of "moderation, freedom, and generosity," where at last she is happy.

          Some thirteen years later Ir#65533;ne picks up her pen again. Everything has changed. Abandoned by friends and colleagues, she lives in the countryside and waits for the knock on the door. Written a decade before the publication of Suite Fran#65533;aise made Ir#65533;ne N#65533;mirovsky famous once more (something Gille did not live to see), The Mirador is a haunted and a haunting book, an unflinching reckoning with the tragic past, and a triumph not only of the imagination but of love.
Publisher: New York : New York Review Books, c2011
ISBN: 9781590174449
1590174445
Characteristics: 239 p. ; 21 cm
Additional Contributors: Harss, Marina

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