People of the Book
From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of March, this is the journey of a rare illuminated manuscript through centuries of exile and war.
In 1996, Hanna Heath, an Australian rare-book expert, is offered the job of a lifetime: analysis and conservation of the famed Sarajevo Haggadah, which has been rescued from Serb shelling during the Bosnian war. Priceless and beautiful, the book is one of the earliest Jewish volumes ever to be illuminated with images. When Hanna, a caustic loner with a passion for her work, discovers a series of tiny artifacts in its ancient binding--an insect-wing fragment, wine stains, salt crystals, a white hair--she begins to unlock the book's mysteries. The listener is ushered into an exquisitely detailed and atmospheric past, tracing the book's journey from its salvation back to its creation.
Inspired by a true story, People of the Book is a novel of both sweeping historical grandeur and intimate emotional intensity and is an ambitious, electrifying work by an acclaimed and beloved author.
Shortlisted for Barbara Jefferis Award 2009.