All Russians Love Birch Trees

All Russians Love Birch Trees An award winning debut novel about a quirky immigrant s journey through a multicultural post nationalist landscape Set in Frankfurt All Russians Love Birch Trees follows a young immigrant named Mash

  • Title: All Russians Love Birch Trees
  • Author: Olga Grjasnowa Eva Bacon
  • ISBN: 9781590515846
  • Page: 201
  • Format: Paperback
  • An award winning debut novel about a quirky immigrant s journey through a multicultural, post nationalist landscape Set in Frankfurt, All Russians Love Birch Trees follows a young immigrant named Masha Fluent in five languages and able to get by in several others, Masha lives with her boyfriend, Elias Her best friends are Muslims struggling to obtain residence permits,An award winning debut novel about a quirky immigrant s journey through a multicultural, post nationalist landscape Set in Frankfurt, All Russians Love Birch Trees follows a young immigrant named Masha Fluent in five languages and able to get by in several others, Masha lives with her boyfriend, Elias Her best friends are Muslims struggling to obtain residence permits, and her parents rarely leave the house except to compare gas prices Masha has nearly completed her studies to become an interpreter, when suddenly Elias is hospitalized after a serious soccer injury and dies, forcing her to question a past that has haunted her for years Olga Grjasnowa has a unique gift for seeing the funny side of even the most tragic situations With cool irony, her debut novel tells the story of a headstrong young woman for whom the issue of origin and nationality is immaterial her Jewish background has taught her she can survive anywhere Yet Masha isn t equipped to deal with grief, and this all too normal shortcoming gives a particularly bittersweet quality to her adventures.

    One thought on “All Russians Love Birch Trees”

    1. 3.5 stars.You don't look like a German at all. How do Germans look? I don't know. And Russians? How do they look? Like people who love birch trees And Palestinians? Like people who are used to waiting a long time. Honestly, I read this book based solely on the title. A contemporary novel that took me from the break up of the Soviet Union to the politics of national identity in both Germany and Israel. The story is told through the eyes of Masha (Maria Kogan),a young twenty something that feels s [...]

    2. Ich habe also offiziell Probleme, all die Gedanken, die ich zu diesem Buch habe, irgendwie kohärent zusammen zu fassen. Vielleicht später. Für den Augenblick belasse ich es bei folgendem:Wenn ihr in Deutschland lebt und irgendwo zwischen 20 und 35 seid, ist es ein Buch für euch. Ist es ein Buch, das ihr unbedingt lesen sollt. Grjasnowa trifft - so abgedroschen dieser Ausdruck klingt - den Nerv einer Generation. Nicht der der Mitt- und Endzwanziger, sondern der der Mitt- und Endzwanziger mit [...]

    3. Es tut mir leid. Ich wollte das Buch mögen. Olga Grjasnowa ist eine tolle, kluge, erfrischende Person, in Radio- und Fernsehinterviews oder Lesungen. Sehr gut finde ich auch, dass jemand in einem Roman ein Deutschland beschreibt, in dem es ganz selbstverständlich ist, dass Menschen eine unterschiedliche Herkunft, Muttersprache, Kultur haben, wo sich vieles vermischt, wo sich Themen wie Zugehörigkeit und Ausgrenzung neu definieren. Auch der Titel ist brillant, zwischen Poesie, Stereotyp und ir [...]

    4. Ich bin beeindruckt und begeistert und berührt.Trauma, Beziehung, Verlust. ehrlich, ohne Beschönigung oder Vereinfachung. Was geschieht, steht für sich, bedarf keiner Erläuterungen oder Deutung. Das habe ich insbesondere in der Beziehung zu Elias geschätzt, lässt aber auch die Beziehungen zu anderen Charakteren lebendig werden, trifft mich. Außenseiter sein. ohne Beschönigung, Überzeichnung oder Vereinfachung der Kleinlichkeit von Ausgrenzung und Herabwürdigung.

    5. This novel is both beautifully moving and lacking at the same time. After trying to come to terms with why I didn't find it only the former, I think I put my finger on it: Grjasnowa's topic is moving and passionate, her treatment of it is not always so. Our experience of the Armenian pogrom in Baku, the hostility of modern Germany to immigrants, and the violence in Israel-Palestine are filtered through the troubled but emotionally flat experience of Masha, the Russian Jew from Azerbaijan living [...]

    6. Nice, quick, young read. Strong female protagonist. Nicely done on weaving together so many current issues: migration, job situation, fear of future, integration, interculturality, war and conflict.

    7. This book was a big, fat "meh". As it doesn't deserve a proper review, here are some of my mildly incoherent thoughts on it: The main character: Ughhhh So bland. No personality. Y u have to narrate? Also, I felt like the narrator and Masha were two different women. I saw NO consistency there. The narrator had a bland, almost detached tone, while Masha was an incredibly emotional, messed-up individual, and I didn't see that in the way she narrated. Maybe that was the point; I don't know. I was ju [...]

    8. Good book, but I completely object to the jacket copy/description, ie: the marketing (which the author almost certainly had nothing to do with, particularly since this is in translation). “A quirky immigrant’s journey through a multicultural, post-nationalist landscape.[she] has a unique gift for seeing the funny side of even the most tragic situations.” Er, what? This is not a quirky comedy. There are a lot of adjectives we could use to describe this protagonist (wry?, introspective?, per [...]

    9. Russian literature always has me in my head for weeks after interacting with it, this book is no exception. It played with me on several levels. First is my fascination with language. How something so abstract is so fundamental to humanity. How it unites us and divides us all at once. How it can be beautiful even when describing the horrible. All this from something that could be considered a background plot. The main story revolves around the normality and routine of life. How we seem to get co [...]

    10. Příběh truchlení. Osobního i nad 20. stoletím. O kompilkovanosti identity se zemí, národem, kulturou, náboženstvím. Vypráví Máša, která má židovské předky, kteří přežili holokaust. V dětsví žila v Azerbajdžánu v době války v Náhorním Karabachu, pak s rodiči v emigraci v Německu. Kniha končí její stáží v Izraeli. Hodně emocí, smutku, nejistot."Narodila jsem se v Azerbajdžánu," řekla jsem."To je daleko.""Zas tak moc ne.""To je přece muslimská země. [...]

    11. Väldigt fin läsupplevelse. Kändes som om jag sprang genom någons (Masjas) liv och hittade en massa saker att identifiera mig med.

    12. Kurzmeinung: Die Fragen nach der Identität und der Heimat ist riesig – genauso das Selbstmitleid der Protagonistin »Ich hatte mal ein Buch gelesen, in dem es um Menschen mit traumatischen Störungen ging, so hätte ich mich selber niemals bezeichnet, aber es stand darin, dass wir die Menschen, die wir lieben, vernichten würden.«Der Anfang war wunderbar. Wirklich. Ich fand es schon spannend, bevor ich überhaupt ein Wort gelesen hatte, denn ich wusste, dass dies von einer Autorin geschriebe [...]

    13. Masha is a young woman studying languages in Germany, where her family immigrated following the outbreak of war near the end of the USSR. She lives with her boyfriend Elias and has a clear plan for her future - becoming a translator for the UN. However, when her boyfriend becomes seriously ill following a soccer injury, Masha finds her life unravelling. Her grief opens up doors to her past, including people she has loved and memories from her childhood she would rather forget. All Russians Love [...]

    14. Am 7.4.2012 in einer Proustpause zu lesen begonnen. Dieses Buch wurde sehr unterschiedlich rezensiert und hat damit mein Interesse geweckt. Auf Rezensenten kann ich mich einfach nicht verlassen ich muss selber lesen. Mittlerweile befinde ich mich auf Seite 177 und bin der Meinung dass Olga Grjasnowa erzählen kann. Mittlerweile habe ich das Buch ausgelesen und ich kann die guten Buchbesprechungen verstehen aber den Überschwang auch wieder nicht. Ihr gelingt es den Verlust der Heimat für den Le [...]

    15. I love immigrant tales of the displaced. Likewise, stories of burgeoning adulthood in a mixed-up world is right up my alley & this compelling debut by a twenty-something & female Azerbaijani Jew whose family had fled from ethnic cleansing to Germany is along those lines & themes. With a comic sensibility that is deadpan & quirky, Grjasnowa takes her protagonist Masha, she of many languages, through very personal grief (her boyfriend, Elias, is injured from playing soccer & de [...]

    16. I received this via a giveaway.I enjoyed this book - the main character, Masha, is an immigrant to Germany, escaping violence after the downfall of Russia. The story deals with the trauma she suffered as a child, how it affects her as an adult, and the repercussions on relationships, her future/career, and her ability to see the world around her.Masha's family is Jewish, although she doesn't strongly identify with being Jewish, but it's when she ends up going to Israel that she starts to decomp [...]

    17. This is the tragic story of a young Jewish woman, born in Azerbaijan, who fled to Germany as a child with her parents, searching for world she can live in. A very interesting book!

    18. I wasn't sure I was even going to rate this book. The thing is - the parts I liked were really good and the parts I didn't were really bad. There's no middle ground. Starting out, the style felt just atrocious. Sorry, there's no nice way to put it. I did get used to it, though, stopped paying a lot of attention, but the style really did nothing for me. The one really puzzling thing about the is Mascha's relationship with Elias. Obviously there's some strong feelings there, I mean (view spoiler)[ [...]

    19. This book can best be described as cold. There is no warmth to the characters, to the descriptions (the flashbacks are particularly flat with a lot of telling rather than showing of events that should have been presented with emotion--and I would have been eager to read a well-told fictional account of events that are not widely known), or to interpersonal relationships. Brrr.

    20. I appreciated the modern political aspects of this novel and it was easy to read. It was 'meh.' No major negatives.

    21. Mascha: eine junge Frau, geboren in Aserbaidschan, aufgewachsen in Deutschland, Jüdin ohne religiöse Grundsätze, befreundet unter anderem mit Ostdeutschen, Türken und Libanesen. Als sie als junges Mädchen in Deutschland in die Schule kommt, zeigt ihr ihre „Sprachlosigkeit“ schnell, dass man ohne Sprache keine Macht hat. Heute spricht sie fünf Sprachen. Ist aber immer noch ziemlich machtlos was ihr eigenes Leben betrifft: ihr Freund erkrankt schwer, sie ist sich ihrer Gefühle für ihn [...]

    22. Triest en bij momenten behoorlijk hopeloos strompelt Maria Kogan (Masja) door dit avontuur: haar plaats zoekend in Duitsland (als Joodse, als Azerbeidjaanse, als begaafde tolk,), heftig vechtend met het trauma dat ze uit Bakoe meesleept, ondraaglijk breekbaar door het verlies van haar geliefde. Het doet haar uiteindelijk besluiten naar Israël te gaan, maar ook in deze vlucht kan ze zichzelf niet achterlaten. En vlucht ze nogmaals, tot ze niet meer verder kan. Het moment waarop het misschien all [...]

    23. This review in its entirety was originally posted at caffeinatedlife: caffeinatedlife/blog/2All Russians Love Birch Trees is essentially is a slice of life novel (for lack of a better term to describe it), following Masha interact with her family who was forced to flee their homes as borders shift and change, her boyfriend whom she has her ups and downs, her ex-boyfriend to whom she still shares a connection, and various friends. It’s interesting because despite of this close group of people, [...]

    24. Ich hab das Buch schon vor einiger Zeit gelesen und immer mal wieder geistert es in meinem Kopf herum. Es hinterlässt einen bleibenden Eindruck, kann mich auch jetzt Monate später nicht einfach los lassen.Als typisch Deutsche, dazu im Ausland lebend, hat der Begriff "Heimat" für mich eine ganz besondere Bedeutung. Mit Mischa hat Olga Grjasnowa eine Protagonistin geschaffen, die für eine neue Generation von Weltbürgern steht, die mit diesem Begriff eigentlich gar nichts mehr anfangen können [...]

    25. Description: The narrator of GrjasnowaΓÇÖs debut novel, Masha Kogan, speaks multiple languages but she doesnΓÇÖt feel at home anywhere. Not in Germany, where her Russian-Jewish family immigrated to while fleeing war in Azerbaijan in 1987. German policy may be to build up its tiny Jewish community, but in practice immigrants of all kinds (especially Masha's friends from Muslim backgrounds) are viewed with distrust. Not in Israel, where she moves after getting a job there as a translator and [...]

    26. Gut, ich geb's zu: Ich habe mir dieses Buch gekauft, weil mir der Titel gefallen hat. "Der Russe ist einer, der Birken liebt" - das fand ich sehr poetisch und wohlklingend und hoffte auf ebensolche Prosa.Brrr. Weit gefehlt. Poesie und Wohlklang der Sprache sind wohl das letzte, was einem zu diesem Werk einfallen könnte. Olga Grjasnowa schreibt kühl und nüchtern, präzise und relativ emotionslos. Das ist messerscharfe Prosa, die (be-)sticht. SPOILER!!!Beschrieben wird das Leben einer jungen Mi [...]

    27. The title was what appealed to me; the summary given by the publisher is misleading though. I thought stories of displaced immigrants would appeal to me, because, you know, [gestures to my own background and life], but I felt as though Grjasnowa's (or maybe the translation) writing fell flat. Story was a little too bland for me.

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