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So this guy meets a talking cat in a bar and takes him home…where the cat doesn’t get along with the guy’s pet boa constrictor.
My Cat Yugoslavia was quite a book. It’s a family drama, a refugee tale, but also a fable. How is the cat like Yugoslavia? The guy—Bekim—is drawn to the cat despite the cat’s sarcasm, cruelty and sometimes violence. Is that how he thinks Yugoslavia treated him? It’s how his father sometimes treated him. But that’s another story.
Half the novel is the history of Bekim’s parents. His mother follows Kosovan/Albanian tradition in marrying a virtual stranger, then becoming a dutiful wife and mother. The family flees Kosovo for Finland (the flight episode was a highlight) to escape the Serbian war of the 1990s, and that’s where Bekim grows up.
The narrators, Edoardo Ballerini and Alison Fraser, were both excellent. Alison Fraser’s soft Kosovan accent and almost shy voice was just right. Overall, an intriguing listen.