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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

TITLE: Writings Of A Wretch
AUTHOR: Marko Vignjević
PUBLISHER: Black Leaf Publishing
COPYRIGHT: 2009 by the Black Leaf Publishing Group, June 8, 2009
FORMAT: Paperback
PRICE: $11.95 (US), £7.99 (UK)
PAGES: 134
ISBN-10: 0955990335
ISBN-13:9780955990335


Reviewed by Deb Hockenberry for Debs Book Reviews


Like many before me, I’ve always asked myself: What is life? I will tell you the answer to which I came: Life is the happiness of others. Once I was a different point of view. That was a time when I, truly, without any exaggeration, showed a lot of promise. I even graduated from University; I have a diploma – if you don’t believe me visit the Kalenich market and ask around, I have a booth there where I sell telephone cords, extension cords, light bulbs manufactured in the Tesla factory in Panchevo, electrical outlets and all other kinds of nonsense to which I gave no thought during my studies, after which I immediately applied to the unemployment office, like a sheep for shearing. ~ from Writings Of A Wretch by Marko Vignjević, page 6, paragraph 2.

Imagine…you’ve been to University but your job is selling at the Kalenich market. It’s a meager living but an honest one. Does the wretch see that? Not really. He’s very dissatisfied with his life. He sees his life as one failure after another.

Translated into English from the original Serbian, Writings Of A Wretch is an uniquely original book completely written in first person and takes us into the innermost thoughts of the wretch’s daily life. This is a very well written book and one that makes you think about your own situation.

As you read this book, you see the wretch make his daily trudge to the market to sell his wares. Little does he know, he really has an important job. Everyone in Belgrade shops at the market. Where else can they get their electrical supplies? Slowly, he begins to lift himself out of his depression and accept his life for what it is. He even raises his self esteem enough to ask a girl to go to the movies with him! But his self esteem fails him and he ruins the date. Throughout the book the wretch asks himself very philosophical questions including the most important: What is my purpose in life?


As you continue reading, you find it hard to put this book down and go through several emotions. At times you want to yell at the wretch to consider himself lucky that he has food in his stomach and a roof over his head. Then you feel frustration that the wretch feels his whole life is a failure and he’ll never do anything right. You’re relieved when, finally, he realizes that his life isn’t so bad at all. Finally, you will feel like cheering when, at last, he accepts his life and learns to be happy in it.

~Deborah Hockenberry is an independent reviewer who invites reviews for selected genres at Debs Book Reviews. Reach her at kidztales@verizon.net and http://thebumpyroadtopublishing.blogspot.com

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