There have been many alternate histories with a crime setting before but this new novel by a young Israeli author writing in English is one of the most challenging and rewarding. It's 1939 in London and the Nazis never came to power, having been brushed aside by the Communists and Hitler is now an exile in London scraping a living as a low grade private eye. He still hates the Jews and remains a most despicable character, when he is engaged to find a missing girl (and sister...). The following story obeys all the rules of pulp writing in a noir and atmospheric tradition, full of violence, wit and irony. But what you are actually reading is the dream of a poor pulp writer imprisoned in Auschwitz. A fascinating walk along a literary tightrope that never rings a wrong note, this is outstanding and moving stuff, whether you are seeking crime, SF or just a great novel!
A fascinating book of which you cannot predict where it is going. Shomer is a worker Jew in Auschwitz and to retain his sanity he imagines an alternative history where Hitler did not come to power. He fled to London, became known as the Wolf and started a seedy private detective agency. He is approached by a wealthy Jewess to find her sister. What is most interesting about the extraordinary story is that in imagining “what if” here it takes us down an equally horrific path. The communists rule in Europe. The Americans hate and fear them. The English hate the Germans, the Nazis hate the English and everyone hates the Jews so there is hatred, prejudice and extreme violence everywhere. There are no real heroes, except maybe Shomer. There are villains and victims and no winners. Brilliant.
Deep in the heart of history's most infamous concentration camp, a man lies dreaming. His name is Shomer, and before the war he was a pulp fiction author. Now, to escape the brutal reality of life in Auschwitz, Shomer spends his nights imagining another world - a world where a disgraced former dictator now known only as Wolf ekes out a miserable existence as a low-rent PI in London's grimiest streets. An extraordinary story of revenge and redemption, A Man Lies Dreaming is the unforgettable testament to the power of imagination.
|Publication date:||1st January 1970|
|Primary Genre||Thriller and Suspense|
Closing date: 03/10/2021
'An emerging master.'
'Young, ambitious, skilled and original.'
-Christopher Priest, author of The Prestige.
'He is a political writer, an iconoclast and sometimes a provocateur ... Osama is a remarkable and ambitious work.'
-China Mieville on Osama.
Lavie Tidhar is the World Fantasy Award winning author of Osama, of The Bookman Histories trilogy and many other works. He also won the British Fantasy Award for Best Novella, for Gorel & The Pot-Bellied God, and was nominated variously for BSFA, Campbell, Sturgeon, Kitschies and Sidewise awards. He grew up on a kibbutz in Israel and in South Africa and currently resides in London.More About Lavie Tidhar