A Foreign Woman

Sergei Dovlatov, Author Grove/Atlantic $17.95 (113p) ISBN 978-0-8021-1342-9
The late Russian-born novelist was a natural storyteller whose gift for mimicry and delicious sense of the absurd are showcased in this novella about Russian emigre life in Forest Hills, N.Y. Dovlatov ( The Suitcase ) deftly sketches in the community--former dissidents, bibliophiles, lawyers--who grapple with having to begin again, and at the bottom. The narrative centers around Marusya Tatarovich, spoiled daughter of party apparatchiks whose behavior has led to something of a cause celebre. Marusya, a free-spirited divorcee, has fallen in love with a posturing Latin American. Their drunken fights, the scurrilous parrot they keep as a pet, Marusya's benign neglect of her son--the product of her relationship with a Soviet porn star--are irreverently and, indeed, unsympathetically described by the author, who also figures as a character in the book. This mischievous look at one ethnic community is a delight, and makes Dovlatov's untimely death even more regrettable. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1991
Release date: 01/01/1991
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