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Wolf Hunt by Ivailo Petrov

Wolf Hunt (1986)

by Ivailo Petrov

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This was my first read of a Bulgarian author as well as my first book from the Bulgarian. I must confess to not really knowing much about Bulgarian history and how they fit in to the momentous events that were happening in the time frame of this book, approximately the 20th century, although most of it through the lens of a couple of characters’ memories during a boondoggle wolf hunt. I was really struck by how peasants and the country folk can be so immune to the direct trauma of a world war and other cataclysmic events if they are lucky enough not to be in its direct path. But the indirect effects will eventually reach you. Because the characters live on the land and farm, they seem to have eaten better than the city-dwelling citizens. As a lifelong suburbanite, makes me worry if he-who-shall-not-be-named starts the next world war over who has the biggest button.
It is also interesting that economic systems, in this case communism, have to be forced on people through propaganda, force, and deception. And that even the most idealistic and well-meaning proponents can easily be corrupted by power and use that power to settle old scores and take the easy road. As one character muses during the book, “Is it possible to achieve a humane end through inhumane means?”

If you only get around to a single example of Bulgarian literature in this lifetime, you would not be going wrong with this one. ( )
  jveezer | Jan 13, 2018 |
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I'll try to introduce to you the six hunters individually and I’ll start with him, since he was the reason they set off in that miserable weather to track wolves.
Is it possible to achieve a humane end through inhumane means?
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0914671707, Paperback)

Published in 1986, three years before the fall of the Berlin Wall, Wolf Hunt was the first novel to portray the human cost of Communist policies on Bulgarian villagers, forced by the government to abandon their land and traditional way of life. Darkly comic and tragic, the novel centers on an ill-fated winter hunting expedition of six neighbors whose history together is long and interwoven. The ensuing story takes the reader on a voyage of shifting perspectives that places the calamitous history of twentieth-century Bulgaria into a human context of helplessness and desperation.

(retrieved from Amazon Fri, 09 Dec 2016 08:50:21 -0500)

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