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4.0 

Eastbound

By Maylis De Kerangal and Jessica Moore
Eastbound by Maylis De Kerangal and Jessica Moore digital book - Fable

Publisher Description

** SELECTED BY THE NEW YORK TIMES AS 1 OF THE 10 BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR **

** INCLUDED ON THE NEW YORKER'S BEST BOOKS OF 2023 **

“At The New York Times Book Review, I think it's fair to say we were dazzled by the way the author creates . . . a miniature masterpiece of narrative tension and compression” –  Emily Eakin, "The Book Review" podcast

In this gripping tale, a Russian conscript and a French woman cross paths on the Trans-Siberian railroad, each fleeing to the east for their own reasons

Perfect for fans of Maggie Shipstead's Great Circle and The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles


Eastbound is both an adventure story and a duet of two vibrant inner worlds.

In mysterious, winding sentences gorgeously translated by Jessica Moore, De Kerangal gives us the story of two unlikely souls entwined in a quest for freedom with a striking sense of tenderness, sharply contrasting the brutality of the surrounding world. 

Racing toward Vladivostok, we meet the young Aliocha, packed onto a Trans-Siberian train with other Russian conscripts. Soon after boarding, he decides to desert and over a midnight smoke in a dark corridor of the train, he encounters an older French woman, Hélène, for whom he feels an uncanny trust.

A complicity quickly grows between the two when he manages to urgently ask—through a pantomime and basic Russian that Hélène must decipher—for her help to hide him. They hurry from the filth of his third-class carriage to Hélène’s first-class sleeping car. Aliocha now a hunted deserter and Hélène his accomplice with her own inner landscape of recent memories to contend with.

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11 Reviews

4.0
Slightly Smiling Face
Believable charactersCharacters change and growMulti-layered charactersBeautifully written

About Maylis De Kerangal

Maylis de Kerangal is the award winning and critically acclaimed author of several books, including The Heart, which was one of the Wall Street Journal’s Ten Best Fiction Works of 2016 and won awards including the Wellcome Book Prize, the Grand Prix RTL-Lire and the Student Choice Novel of the Year from France Culture and Télérama; Naissance d’un pont (published in English as Birth of a Bridge), which won of the Prix Franz Hessel and Prix Médicis; and Un chemin de tables, whose English translation, The Cook, was a New York Times Book Review Editors’ Choice. Mend the Living was Longlisted for the Booker International Prize 2016.

Jessica Moore is a poet, translator, author, and singer-songwriter. A former Lannan writer-in-residence and winner of a PEN America Translation Award for her translation of Turkana Boy, by Jean-François Beauchemin, her first collection of poems, Everything, now, was published in 2012. She lives in Toronto.

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