Two award-winning works of fiction by one of America's finest writers, together in one collection. In "The Shawl," a woman named Rosa Lublin watches a concentration camp guard murder her daughter. In "Rosa," that same woman appears thirty years later, "a mad woman and a scavenger" in a Miami hotel. She has no life in the present because her past will never end. In both stories, there is a shawl-a shawl that can sustain a starving child, inadvertently destroy her, or magically conjure her back to life. Both stories were originally published in the New Yorker in the 1980s; each was included in the annual Best American Short Stories and awarded First Prize in the annual O. Henry Prize Stories collection. Each succeeds in imagining the unimaginable: the horror of the Holocaust and the unfillable emptiness of its aftermath. Fiercely immediate, complex, and unforgettable, each is a masterwork by a writer the New York Times hailed as "the most accomplished and graceful literary stylist of our time."
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