Everybody Reads: Olga Tokarczuk’s The Books of Jacob

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We invite you to read Olga Tokarczuk’s masterpiece, now translated for the first time into English, and listen to a worldwide discussion of the book guided by our distinguished panelists.

Poland’s literary star Olga Tokarczuk won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2019. This winter her most ambitious novel The Books of Jacob was translated into English, having first appeared in Polish in 2014. This sprawling epic tells the story of Jacob Frank, a real-life messianic figure in eighteenth-century Poland, who led thousands of his Jewish followers into Catholic baptism. The book weaves together the lives of Poles and Jews, women and men, peasants and nobility, priests and rabbis, rulers and visionaries, in an unsettling tapestry of earthy beauty and poignancy. The landscape and history of Ukraine feature vividly in this brilliant narrative.

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