160 pages

Trade Paper

List Price US $15.99
ISBN: 9781942658443


ISBN: 9781942658450

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“A feat of literary acrobatics.”

New York Review of Books

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“Halfon is a master.”

Smithsonian magazine

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“Elegant and meditative.”

Words Without Borders

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“Brimming with subtle mystery, inquisitiveness, oddity, coincidence, and melancholy. . . . A highly entertaining tragedy, a fascinating page-turner.”

Asymptote Journal

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“A careful, precise story that explores the many facets of loss and healing.”

World Literature Today

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“Powerful, gorgeous. . . . Halfon gives an unforgettable, haunting voice to lesser-known populations of the Jewish diaspora, including Latin American and Lebanese Jews. Mourning shows how the weaving together of diasporic families across cultures and places creates ripples through generations.”

Jewish Book Council

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“Evocative. . . . Mourning is a mystery, a drama and a fictional memoir. It is a book that manages to be both melancholy in tone yet triumphant in spirit.”

Jewish Boston

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“Part Jorge Luis Borges, part Sholom Aleichem. . . . Halfon is the sort of traveler who admits he knows nothing, yet finds enlightenment everywhere. Mourning emits some little illumination of human nature on every page.”


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“With his slender but deceptively weighty books, which are at once breezy and melancholic, bemused and bitter, [Halfon] opens up worlds to readers in return.”

Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

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“An unforgettable exploration of one family’s fluid, collective memory.”


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“Halfon spins a bewitching tale. . . . Careful, arresting prose brings everything together in a moving, evocative story of the narrator’s bloodline.”

Publishers Weekly

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“[Halfon] clarif[ies] in fluid, accessible language that however slippery, memory is essential to who we are.”

Library Journal

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“Halfon’s writing hits a virtual ecstasy.”

Jonas Mekas, director of As I Was Moving Ahead Occasionally I Saw Brief Glimpses of Beauty at Electric Literature

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“Halfon’s magnificent prose and abundant storytelling prowess work in tandem to create an irresistible style. . . . As with the ghostly, evocative trails of smoke that have adorned each of Halfon’s English edition covers, Mourning is possessed by traces of the ethereal, the mysterious, and the shadowy. . . . [It] functions wonderfully as the third volume in Halfon’s bittersweet, doleful inquest into family folklore, remembrance, and indelible generational anguish.”

Jeremy Garber, Powell’s Books (Portland, OR)

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“I can’t say enough great things about Eduardo Halfon’s novels. His newest, Mourning, translated by the incredible Lisa Dillman & Daniel Hahn is no exception.”

Mark Haber, Brazos Bookstore (Houston, TX)

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In Mourning, Eduardo Halfon’s eponymous wanderer travels to Poland, Italy, the U.S., and the Guatemalan countryside in search of secrets he can barely name. He follows memory’s strands back to his maternal roots in Jewish Poland and to the contradictory, forbidden stories of his father’s Lebanese-Jewish immigrant family, specifically surrounding the long-ago childhood death by drowning of his uncle Salomón. But what, or who, really killed Salomón? As he goes deeper, he realizes that the truth lies buried in his own past, in the brutal Guatemala of the 1970s and his subsequent exile to the American South.

Mourning is a subtle and stirring reflection on the formative and destructive power of family mythology, silence, and loss.

In consultation with the author, Mourning was translated from the Spanish by Lisa Dillman and Daniel Hahn, both of whom also contributed to the translations of The Polish Boxer, Monastery, and Canción.

International Latino Book Award Winner

Edward Lewis Wallant Award Winner

Kirkus Prize Finalist

Neustadt International Prize Finalist

Balcones Fiction Prize Finalist

PEN Translation Prize Longlist

Kirkus Reviews “Best Book of the Year” selection

Library Journal “Top Work in Translation” selection

Excerpt from Mourning

Eduardo Halfon discusses Mourning with co-translators Lisa Dillman and Daniel Hahn, in a conversation moderated by Edward Lewis Wallant Award judge Avinoam Patt, in the Mass Review.

Blurring the line between fact and fiction, Eduardo Halfon shares family photographs and an annotated excerpt from Mourning in “A Yom Kippur Scene (With Footnotes)” on the Jewish Book Council’s “ProsenPeople” blog.

Read more from Mourning in an excerpt introduced by director Jonas Mekas at Electric Literature, in a deleted scene at Stay Thirty Magazine, where Eduardo Halfon also participates in the One Hundred Words project, and in BOMB magazine.