A Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True by Brigid Pasulka (2009)
Spanning the second half of the 20th century, this first novel tells the heartbreaking yet uplifting story of Poland. One thread of the story is set around WWII in a small village. A man nicknamed the Pigeon courts a beauty called Anielica. The second thread occurs in the early 1990s after the fall of communism – when the Pigeon and Anielica’s granddaughter leaves the village to explore Krakow.
A beautifully written story, A Long, Long Time Ago and Essentially True will make you laugh, cry, and want to find the nearest Polish restaurant (it may also inspire a visit to Poland itself). The whimsical cover is a good representation of the story within.
Brigid Pasulka is a local author teaching at Whitney Young. She was awarded the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award. Read a bio of the author, reviews of the book and an excerpt at BookBrowse.com. Check out Shelf Life’s interview with the author.