The Tiger's Wife
is an excellent debut novel from Tea Obreht. Natalia is a doctor, living somewhere in the former Yugoslavia. The war that ended in her country's partitioning has just ended and she is on her way over the new border to vaccinate children at an orphanage when she recieves notice that her grandfather has died in a clinic in some unknown bordertown he'd traveled to with out notice to anyone. It is Natalia's job to find that clinic and recover his personal effects her grandmother believes have been stolen. While finishing up her medical mission and picking up her grandfather's things, Natalia has time to remember stories she'd been told from her Grandfather's youth ruminate on mystery of his death.
There was something timeless in the telling of the story of Natalia and her Grandfather and the legends of Grandfather's youth. I am a very critical reader and it takes an awful lot for me to suspend disbelief but Obreht was able to merge seamlessly the realm of reality with the realm of magic and myth and create something astonishing and beautiful. I can't wait to read Tea Obreht's next novel!