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Extended Audio Sample The Ministry of Special Cases, by Nathan Englander Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,817 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Nathan Englander Narrator: Arthur Morey Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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From Nathan Englander, author of the literary sensation For the Relief of Unbearable Urges, a spectacular debut novel set at the height of Argentina's Dirty War.

An unforgettable work of realism and of the imagination, a hallucinatory journey into a world of terror, into a forbidden city within a city at a time of radical instability and dislocation, Englander's novel moves effortlessly between the cosmic and the minute, wrestling with extraordinary themes and binding them into an exceptionally crafted narrative that fuses absurdity and desolation with transcendence and abiding love. The fate of the Jews; the fate of the disappeared; the fate of one family- of a hopelessly lost father and a hopelessly lost son—all meet in the dark, inescapably tortuous corridors of the Ministry of Special Cases.

Buenos Aires, 1976.

Kaddish Poznan, hijo-de-puta, son of a whore, detested by his son, Pato, who makes his living defacing Jewish gravestones, obscuring disreputable histories of those who under the current regime have reason to fear their past as much as their future. But when Pato disappears, the Poznan family is brought to its knees in a realm of Kafkaesque despair and indirection.

THE MINISTRY OF SPECIAL CASES is the story of one man's inability to overcome his name and his history—of a mother's love for her vanished son—of a family's reckoning with the laws of mourning and of marriage—of a country where disappeared children are dropped from planes into the sea, while their loved ones are cruelly plagued by the rituals of an impermeable bureaucracy with its taunting decree of habeas corpus, the need to produce a body. Nathan Englander's tour de force confirms his place as one of the most significant writers of his generation.

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Quotes & Awards

  • One of the 2007 New York Times Book Review 100 Notable Books for Fiction

Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Isaac | 2/10/2014

    " wow, what a miserable book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Kendall | 2/9/2014

    " Echoes of Catch-22 (one of my favorites) to balance out the tragedy of the storyline. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Barbara | 2/8/2014

    " Good writer. Loved this book. If the government is doing bad things that do not have an effect on us then we do not think of them as a bad government. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Catherine Bathrick | 2/4/2014

    " great writing. great story. educational, funny and heart wrenching. "

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