No One Is Here Except All of Us
Hey, blog. I’ve been horrible about updating again. I blame my internet for being unreliable. Anyway, let’s move on…
I first heard of Ramona Ausubel almost a year ago when I read her haunting and beautiful short story “Atria” in The New Yorker. The story was so great that I remembered it and, over the summer, looked her up, to see if she’d written anything I could get my hands on, and found out she had her debut novel coming out in February. Then either in November or December, I saw an ad in Shelf Awareness Pro for a free galley, I entered to win one, and I got one! Thanks, Riverhead Books!
Author: Ramona Ausubel
This novel centers around a remote Jewish village in Romania that decides, after finding a stranger in the river, to combat the impending World War II by reinventing themselves and their world. The effort is led by Lena, a young girl, and the stranger, and while the village’s plot works for a while, the war creeps in and our narrator, Lena, who has grown into a young mother, is forced to flee the village with her sons.
I loved this book. It was sad, and beautiful, and haunting, and surreal, and every sentence was one I wanted to mark because it was so poetic and lovely. If none of these words sound like they describe books you ordinarily like, don’t read it. You won’t like it. But if you do like poetic, dreamlike, borderline magical realism (not quite though, sorry), you absolutely should read No One Is Here Except All of Us because it is THE BEST. It’s a book that creeps into your bones and stays there.
And after (or before) you read it, read “Atria” because it’s also really excellent.
Ramona Ausubel, I am keeping an eye out for more of your writing.