More Than I Love My Life: A Novel

  • From the Publisher
September 1, 2020

From the inter­na­tion­al­ly best-sell­ing author – and revered moral voice – a remark­able nov­el of suf­fer­ing, love, and heal­ing, the sto­ry of three gen­er­a­tions of women and a secret that needs to be told.

More Than I Love My Life is the sto­ry of three strong women: Vera, age nine­ty; her daugh­ter, Nina; and her grand­daugh­ter, Gili, who at thir­ty-nine is a film­mak­er and a wary con­sumer of affec­tion. A bit­ter secret divides each moth­er-and-daugh­ter pair, though Gili – aban­doned by Nina when she was just three – has always been close to her grand­moth­er. With Gili mak­ing the arrange­ments, they trav­el togeth­er to Goli Otok, a bar­ren island off the coast of Croa­t­ia, where Vera was impris­oned and tor­tured for three years as a young wife after she refused to betray her hus­band and denounce him as an ene­my of the peo­ple. This unlike­ly jour­ney – fil­tered through the lens of Gili’s cam­era, as she seeks to make a film that might help explain her life – lays bare the inter­twin­ing of fear, love, and mer­cy, and the com­plex over­lap­ping demands of roman­tic and parental pas­sion.

More Than I Love My Life was inspired by the true sto­ry of one of David Gross­man­’s long­time con­fi­dantes, a woman who, in the ear­ly 1950s, was held on the noto­ri­ous Goli Otok (“the Adri­at­ic Alca­traz”). With flash­backs to the stal­wart Vera pro­tect­ing what was most pre­cious on the wretched rock where she was held, and Gross­man­’s fear­less exam­i­na­tion of the human heart, this swift nov­el will thrill his many read­ers and bring new ones into the fold.

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