“The Messiah of Stockholm” Review by Melody Anne
Hi everyone! My name is Melody Anne and I’m from the blog The Ms. InBetweeners. Fantasy Angel has given me this great opportunity to post on their blog and I can’t thank them enough. Today’s book review is on “The Messiah of Stockholm” by Cynthia Ozick.
“The Messiah of Stockholm” is a novel about catastrophe, trauma, and the world of literature. It is placed within a post-WWII period, and the protagonist, Lars Andeming, is just looking for family. Lars is a book reviewer for a Stockholm daily, and it certainly is a mundane job. There is no excitement within his life, yet he is quite the eccentric character. He was an orphan from an Eastern European country, and was brought to Stockholm with no knowledge of who is actually is. He believes himself to be the son of the real life writer, Bruno Schulz. Bruno Schulz was a Polish writer who was quite successful, but was unfortunately executed by the Nazis prior to his last novel being published. Lars creates similarities between the two of them, and thrives off of the idea of being a famous writer’s son. He has no proof, but attempts to piece information together to form his legitimacy. His world becomes paper. He lives and breathes for paper; it is the paper that signifies the relationship Schulz and Lars have. In the end, his world of pretentiousness and paper gets destroyed, and he is left with his own truth.
It’s a short read of just over 100 pages, but it involves such large ideas. Ozick writes lyricism, not just words. The novel is so eloquently written. It sheds light on the reality of war, and catastrophe, but does it in such a way that provides beauty. She includes humour and wittiness that cannot be duplicated. This is a novel that you have to read at least once because it is that exquisite. I definitely give “The Messiah of Stockholm” a 5/5, and I’m almost positive you will too. Pick up this book and you will learn more about Eastern European culture, war, and how literature should actually be written.
Thank you again Fantasy Angel! Hope you enjoyed the post!
About the Blogger
Melody is so much of a lover of English literature that she named her pup Bingley after the Jane Austen character. In addition to being the writer of her blog The Ms. InBetweeners, she is a photographer and owner of the Etsy shop Melody Anne Prints. She writes articles and poetry in her non-blogging time (which you can find online), and she absolutely adores her puppy. You can find her at her blog http://themsinbetweeners.com, on twitter @melodyyannep and on instagram @melodyannep.