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Broken April

really liked it 4.0  ·  Rating details ·  2,473 Ratings  ·  231 Reviews
Two destinies intersect in Broken April. The first is that of Gjor, a young mountaineer who (much against his will) has just killed a man in order to avenge the death of his older brother, and who expects to be killed himself in keeping with the provisions of the Code that regulates life in the highlands. The second is that of a young couple on their honeymoon who have com ...more
Paperback, 216 pages
Published June 16th 1998 by New Amsterdam Books (first published November 23rd 1978)
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Mar 24, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone with the mildest curiousity about Albania
This is a strange book. When I lived in eastern Europe, I was told there were two sorts of Eastern European countries, those which were highly-developed and industrialized (Czechoslovakia, Poland, Hungary) and those which were not (Bulgaria, Romania) as well as those which were a mix of the two (Yugoslavia, Soviet Union) but no one knew anything about Albania. Reading this book, it's like the land that time forgot because you're never quite sure where you are in history. (As it turns out, it's A ...more
Jan 24, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: estantería
Una novela muy interesante, con unos personajes muy bien trabajados y que trata un tema que hace que la lectura sea muy amena: el Kanun.
Lorenzo Berardi
Jul 08, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012, albanian
"Broken April" is a haunting story with an out of time charm. There are not many novels around with such a simple and yet powerfully evocative style. More than the plot in itself what counts here is the atmosphere Kadare is able to recreate.

I actually perceived the mist and the cold as well as the brightless nights and the wind-swept landscapes where the novel takes place with an uncommon intensity.
As a reader who gets easily distracted, "Broken April" meant an unusual business to me: this book
Ataur Rahman
When reading this book I recalled "Blindness" of Saramago. Broken April is haunting, dark, disturbing and yet strangely attractive. The narration is so matter of fact yet the chill of death is looming in every word. It is the story of the relentless Kanun holding sway over the Albanian mountainsmen. The currency of the Kanunis death and so death seems as ever-present as money is in our society. There is always a sense of weirdness and unreality in the way the Mountainsmen deal with death, reveng ...more
Oct 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed, library, albania
Set in the interwar years, this haunting novel tells of an Albanian blood feud: Gyakmarrja, as it affects several people: Gjorg [George], the unwilling killer of his murdered brother's killer; Bessian and Diana, a honeymooning couple who want to see the mountain area of Albania and to investigate the customs firsthand; and Mark, the "steward of the blood" [He collects what is called a "blood-tax" from a murderer's family and maintains Book of the Blood, giving details of every blood feud going b ...more
Oct 22, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
موضوع بر سر قانون خون و آداب و رسوم فلات نشینان آلبانیایی در اوایل قرن بیسته. اسماعیل کاداره حقایقی را به شکل داستان به رشته ی تحریر درآورده که امیدوارم در هیچ کجای دنیا اثری از اینگونه قوانین باقی نمونده باشه!

با وجود توصیف های زیبا و نگارش روان این کتاب، تکرار بعضی از حرفها و جمله ها در بخشهای مختلفی از کتاب ایراد کار بود.

به نظرم کتاب سطح بالایی نیست و شاید چهار ستاره براش زیاده اما با این وجود خوندنش رو به دوستان پیشنهاد می دم.

بخشهایی از کتاب:

* متحیر بود که "فشنگ جهیز عروس" را که قانون به شوه
Jul 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: albania, balkans
Jings. Just about the most depressing book I have ever read: powerful, bleak and timeless. It's sometime in post-Ottoman, pre-Hoxha Albania and a blood feud is playing itself out through the eyes of a young mountaineer, who is hopelessly caught in the game, while a couple of urban honeymooners are rubbernecking their way around the High Plateau. Then it gets a bit Passage to India as done by Kafka. And it's drizzling in the grey mountains, where the widow in black sits by the road above the vill ...more
Omid Kamyarnejad
Apr 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
استعاره ای بی همتا که نظیر آن را در ایران داریم... داستان با دانای کل و خصلت زاویه دید مداخله گر روایت می شود و به طعنه به حکومت که این باور قومی و قبیله ای در آلبانی به دست خود حکومت بوده تا بتواند خون بهای قتل ها را به جیب بزند و خرافات قانونمند پیش برود...
تشبیه ها بسیار زیبا و به جا و حتا در بعضی مواقع شبیه به چخوف ولی در بعضی موارد هم تشبیه ها نادرست به کار برده شده که به زعم اینجانب ضعف مترجم در میان بوده...
Mar 24, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 20th-century
Κεντρικό θέμα του αρκετά καταθλιπτικού μα συνάμα εξαιρετικά καλογραμμένου βιβλίου του Κανταρέ, είναι ο εντελώς παράλογος και ακατανόητος Αλβανικός κώδικας τιμής (και αίματος), ονόματι Κανούν. Δεν ήξερα τίποτα για το συγκεκριμένο θέμα, δυσκολεύτηκα πολύ να πιστέψω ότι τα γεγονότα του βιβλίου περιέγραφαν περιστατικά αντλημένα από την πραγματικότητα, έψαξα στο ίντερνετ σχετικά και βρήκα ότι όντως αυτός ο κώδικας στις αρχές του 20ου αιώνα ήταν στα ντουζένια του στον Αλβανικό Βορρά, και ότι ακόμα και ...more
Tara Newton
Dec 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A visceral breakdown of emotions. A darkness of souls. A terrific relationship between the eye and the world. Beautiful climax. A film.
I’m happy to say that my first contact with Albanian literature has been a success. I had no idea what to expect since I didn’t know anything about the plot, or Kadare, or, as a matter of fact, Albania. I thought I saw an Albanian movie once, but I just checked and it’s actually a Serbian film [not the Serbian film, if you know what I mean, I hope you don’t, don’t google it!].

Anyway, the story begins with a man lying behind a ridge, freezing his butt off, a rifle in his hands, waiting for some
Feb 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a beautifully written, bleak and haunting novel, set between the wars in the mountains of northern Albania. It is very short and I read it in a day. The story centres on a family caught up in the blood feuds of this region, which sadly still exist, according to recent newspaper reports.

The book centres on a complicated etiquette of death included in the Kanun, a set of traditional laws. After one man kills to avenge an insult, a duty of revenge continues until all the men of a household
Maryam Hosseini
Jan 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
وقـتی که خـون آدم مشـخـصی گریبان انسـان را بگیرد، غلبه بر آن دشوار اسـت، ولی با خونی که معلوم نبود از کجـا سرچشـمه می گـیرد و کجا خـشـک می شـود چـه می توان کـرد؟
این خونی ساده نبود، بلکه سیلابهای خون نسل های انسانی بود که در سراسر فلات جاری می شد، خون جوان و پیر، از ...سالها و قرن ها پـیش
The Albanian highlands are a gloomy place where hard-nosed and hard-scrabble peasants eke out a precarious living farming corn. Even the mountain fairies in their tales seem to be hard-nosed and hard-scrabble.

What glamour there is in the peasants' lives derives from their participation in self-perpetuating blood-feuds, regulated (like everything else) by the ancient set of oral laws known as the Kanun.

What sort of person goes there on his honeymoon?

A fool, if you ask me. A somewhat romantic fo
Jun 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

„წყარო“, „აღმოცენება“, „ჩქეფა“, „გაფურჩქნა“, „ყლორტი“, „შობა“, „დასაბამი“ - ეს ის სიტყვებია, რასაც ინგლისური „Spring“ აღნიშნავს და, მართალია, ლინგვისტი არ ვარ და გადაუმოწმებელ რამეს ვამბობ, მაინც მჯერა, რომ სწორედ ამ სიტყვების გამოისობით დაერქვა სახელი გაზაფხულს. მჯერა იმიტომ, რომ გაზაფხული სიცივისა და სიბნელის დასასრულია და იმედისა და ჩქეფის დასაბამი. გაზაფხულზე ელი, რომ დასრულდება სიბნელე და მოვა ფერები, მოვა ახალი სიცოცხლე და სამყარო შენ ირგვლივ ახალი ენერგიით, ახალი სიცოცხლით დამშვენდება. აკ
Mar 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The version I read was in English. It was a translation of the French translation of the original Albanian. I feel that the story has not suffered because of this double translation.

This haunting tale, which revolves around the Law of Lek, the codification of feuding in traditional Albania, is brief but brilliant. As in his other works, Ismail Kadare captures a great deal with a few words.

Read this and anything else by this author.
Oto Bakradze
არ მეგონა სვანეთის გარდა სისხლის აღების ტრადიცია სხვაგანაც თუ იყო სადმე. თურმე ყოფილა ალბანეთის მთიანეთში.
კარგი რომანია. მძიმე, დეპრესიული. მთავარი გმირის ფიქრებით კანუნის უაზრობაზე, მაგრამ სირცხვილის შიშით მასზე ვერ ნათქვამ უარზე. ასევე იმაზე თუ როგორ არიან დაინტერესებულები კანუნის პრინცი და მისი ოჯახი, რაც შეიძლება ბევრი მკვლელობა მოხდეს მთებში რათა მეტი ფული შეუვიდეთ სისხლის ბეგარის გადახდით.

არ ვიცი რამდენად გაყიდვადი იქნებოდა წიგნი სიყვარულის ისტორიის გარეშე, მაგრამ მე რომ უფრო მომეწონებოდა
Ahmad Sharabiani
Oct 05, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, 1001-book
286. Broken April, Ismail Kadare
آوریل شکسته - اسماعیل کاداره (مرکز) ادبیات آلبانی
هفتاد سال قبل، شبی میهمان ناشناسی که هنوز هم ناشناس است، وارد دهکده میشود و در خانه پدربزرگ گیورگ را میزند، و تقاضای مهمان شدن میکند، آنها نیز مطابق رسوم و سنت از او پذیرایی میکنند، و صبح نیز مطابق رسوم و سنت او را تا خارج دهکده بدرقه میکنند. وقتی که مرد خانواده از میهمان جدا میشود: ناشناس هدف گلوله قرار میگیرد، مطابق رسوم، آنگاه که میهمانی که شما بدرقه میکردید جلوی چشمان مهماندار کشته شود، وظیفه میزبان است که انتقا
Nov 02, 2010 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I realize that I should like this book - lots of people like this book. I read the ending twice and it just didn't happen. I didn't like the ending, although I can grasp the "poeticness" (yes, I just made up that word) of it. I struggled with the story, with a story line that was intriguing, but bloody. It was just a painful read all the way around and I pushed myself to get through this relatively short book. I wouldn't recommend it and maybe after we discuss it at book club I will appreciate i ...more
Feb 15, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely loved this book-- a well-written bittersweet love story that is set in Albania. The novel really explores the lifestyle of those who lived on the high plateaus of the country in the early 20th century and their code of ethics, (namely the never-ending blood feuds that allow a death for a death, with family constantly having to sacrifice one of their own).
Luka Fadiurashvili
Jun 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: albanian
პლიუსი - სასწაული სიჩქარით იკითხება
მინუსი - დაუმთავრებელი, ჩამოუყალიბებელი პერსონაჟები (სუბიექტურად)
და მაინც ძალიან მაგარი რომანი. როგორ ვთქვა ქართველმა, რომ ეს თემა არ მაინტერესებს, მაგრამ ალბათ იმდენად მობეზრებული მაქვს.. არ ვიცი. თუმცა, იმდენი ხანი ველოდი კადარეს, მადლობა ღმერთს მოლოდინი გაამართლა. წიგნმა იმდენად ვერა, როგორც თვითონ ავტორის მწერლურმა ოსტატობამ გამიყვანა ალბანეთის მთიანეთში. ველოდი ძალიან მძიმეს, აღმოჩნდა ძალიან მსუბუქი, კანფეტივით საკითხავი, ველოდი ლოკალურს და არც მთლად მასე
Brenda C Kayne
Oct 27, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
An amazing work of fiction that explains a dismal, distressing, oppressive, and highly ritualized code of revenge in an obscure area of Albania. Much to my dismay, this code of revenge is fact. (I googled it.) Perhaps this is Kadare's point. The book, hands down, is my favorite "dark" book because it so explictly depicts the karmic absurdity of revenge.

One wonders if revenge is actually a natural response or perhaps a form of defensive behavior gone wrong. At any rate, our desires for revenge de
Javier de la Peña Ontanaya
Esta breve pero intensa novela de Kadaré es simplemente adictiva. Contiene lo mejor de la literatura de viajes, rigor histórico y ficción. Kadaré recrea a la perfección el ambiente rural, místico y cultural de las zonas montañosas de Albania, donde se vive de forma paralela al resto de la vida 'urbana'. Incluye muchos nombres y conceptos en albanés, pero no agobian, sino todo lo contrario. La palabra de honor que rige en las montañas albanesas se nos presenta aquí a través de diferentes ojos: lo ...more
Dec 30, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In "Broken April", Ismael Kadare, Albania's best-known writer, focuses on the blood feud traditions of his country's uplands. The Albanian blood feud is far beyond the angry impulse that compels even the studious Hamlet to revenge his father; instead, its rituals are laid down in the law that governs this part of Albania. The intent of the law is to regulate the blood feud, to channel it in a way that keeps it from raging out of control, but the practical effect is to create a landscape of night ...more
Kathleen Dixon
Aug 14, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novel, albania
This is not a book intended to make the reader comfortable.
The funeral took place the next day around noon. the professional mourners came from afar, clawing their faces and tearing their hair according to the custom. . . . Gjorg, too, walked in the procvession. At first he had refused to take part in the ceremony, but at last he had given in to his father's urging. . . . "But I am the Gjaks," Gjorg had protested. "I'm the one who killed him. Why must I go?"
It's inconceivable, isn't it? A murder
Dec 01, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Voldemort by: Ambra
Shelves: albanian
I wanted to read this book for a long time even if Kadare has never been one of my favorite writers. Although, since this book was recommended, I decided to give it a try. And what a fine surprise it was.
The main subject is opened plainly, giving us a swift conflict, that of vengeance, a delicate issue for our country. At the same time, the finale is also prearranged. In fact Albanian people can understand it better, because they already know a bit regarding Kanun. But a foreigner, who isn’t fa
Kamran Motamedi
Apr 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
رمان درجه یکی است. ترجمه هم خوب و روان. سنگینی مرگ از همان ابتدا تا انتها همراه خواننده است و نه تنها داستانی جذاب خلق شده که حتما نمونه قابل استنادی برای تاریخنگاری و مردمشناسی هم است.

به من باشد میگویم رمانی است درباره خیلی چیزها اما بیش از همه درباره مرگ؛ گیورگ نمیدانست که آیا بهتر است یک ماه دیگر بمیرد یا آن زندگی کسالتبار (که البته چنین صفتی به آن اطلاق نمیشود چرا که انگار بدیل دیگری وجود ندارد) را تاب آورد.

در رمان میخوانیم که «قبر تمام آنچیزی است که از زندگی میماند.» و این شوخی نیست. در آن
George Rife
Jul 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Broken April is a remarkable novel by what some call the greatest Albanian writer. I know you're thinking that's probably a pretty low bar, but still I enjoyed his writing style a very great deal- it's a spare unpretentious style that suits me well- I much prefer a writer who can say a great deal with a minimum of words. It's a dark story but also a short one, so it shouldn't get you down too much. Just three main characters, two of which are a married couple who briefly meet the 3rd character, ...more
Gjorg Berisha is 26 year 0ld Albanian mountaineer, forced to avenge his brother's death according to Kanun law, a very strict and complicated feudal code of Law. The story opens with him killing a member of the family that killed his brother. Gjorg is given a 30 day grace period before his victim's family can murder him. Bessian Vorpsi and his wife Diana are on their honeymoon trip to the mountains. Bessian is fascinated with the highland people that practice the Blood Feud. While on the journey ...more
Farhan Khalid

This was the fateful day in his life

It was the second time in his life that he had lain in wait to take revenge

But the man he must kill was the same one

His family had had great trouble paying the fine for the first wound, and a second fine would ruin them

But there was no penalty for death

He felt as if his name had quitted his body, his chest, his skin, to pour itself cruelly outside

The messengers of death spread that name everywhere

He felt that from now on the lives of all the generations t
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  • I humburi
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  • The Teacher of Cheops
  • The Highland Lute
  • Liquidation
  • The Country Where No One Ever Dies
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  • A Question of Power
  • Tregtar flamujsh
  • Doktor Gjilpëra
  • By the Open Sea
  • The Railway
  • Why?!(Pse?!)
  • The Yellow Rain
  • On heroes, lizards and passion
  • Selected Poems
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Ismail Kadare (also spelled Kadaré) is an Albanian novelist and poet. He has been a leading literary figure in Albania since the 1960s. He focused on short stories until the publication of his first novel, The General of the Dead Army. In 1996 he became a lifetime member of the Academy of Moral and Political Sciences of France. In 1992, he was awarded the Prix mondial Cino Del Duca; in 2005, he wo ...more
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“It was only a phrase that went from mouth to mouth and was never quite swallowed.” 837 likes
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