Published in 1936 in Russia, this book represents a masterful mixture of autobiographical prose with pure fiction, and includes Ehrenburg’s vivid recollections of the days of his youth spent among Parisian Bohemia. Although an independent work, The Book For Adults is regarded by literary critics as a first draft for Ehrenburg's Peoples, Years, Life memories corpus.
Rights sold: Germany - Volk und Welt, Spain - Lumen
"Unfortunately, AQUARIUS OVER ODESSA will remain the author's final work; the tragic accident that took his life in 1994 has deprived Russian literature of one of its more promising talents." -- Joseph P. Mozur Jr., World Literature Today
The astrological sign of change, Aquarius, bodes neither peace nor goodwill for Mitrofanov's blue-collar hero Semyon Stavraki, a deep-sea diver working in the rough and bustling port of Odessa. Stavraki, an orphan raised in the ruins of postwar Odessa, claims the city as his mother and proudly credits her with having taught him honesty, respect, and tolerance for others. Nevertheless, Stavraki's story illustrates how bad things can befall good people, and his fortunes take a disastrous turn precisely when the star sign appears over the city.
The first-person narrative opens with Stavraki's homecoming from a prison camp in the north...