David Albahari was born in Serbia in 1948. He founded, and was for many years the editor in chief of, Pismo, a magazine of world literature. He is also an accomplished translator of Anglo-American literature. He lives in Calgary, Canada.
A young journalist sees a man slap a beautiful woman on the shore of the Danube. Intrigued, he follows the woman into the tangled streets of the city until he loses sight of her. A few days later a mysterious package arrives. As he delves deeper trying to decipher the contents, he finds himself unravelling a terrible conspiracy that seems destined to end in tragedy...
Believing they were being taken to a better camp, Belgrade's Jews would climb into the truck with a sense of relief. Mainly women, children and the elderly, they expected a long and uncomfortable trip but, after crossing the border, their journey would come to an abrupt end. Here the drivers would get out and attach a hose from the exhaust to the back of the truck-Over the course of a few months in 1942 the Nazis systematically exterminated the majority of Serbia's Jews using carbon monoxide and specially designed trucks. The only information the narrator of this bleakly comic novel can find about the summer when his relatives disappeared is the names of the truck drivers: G-tz and Meyer. During his research he becomes fascinated by the unknowable characters and daily lives of these men. But his imagination proves a dangerous force, and his obsession with the past threatens to overwhelm him.
David Albahari is one of the most prominent writers to emerge from the former Yugoslavia in the last twenty years. His serious, understated explorations of the self have influenced many writers of his native land's younger generation. The narrator of Bait has just exiled himself to Canada after the collapse of Yugoslavia and the death of his mother. As he listens to a series of audio tapes recorded by his mother years before, the narrator ponders her life and their relationship while simultaneously trying to come to terms with a new life of his own - one of exile and the confusion of a new language and culture. Bait is an exquisitely crafted novel that exhibits the wit and raw honesty Albahari's readers have long admired.
David Albahari is one of the most prominent prose writers to come out of the former Yugoslavia in the last twenty years. His short stories, which developed largely outside the canon of Serbian literature, have influenced a generation of Balkan writers. This collection gathers Albahari's best and most important stories, moving from an early preoccupation with the family and Central European culture to metafictional searches for the roots of his identity.