Three Apples Fell from the Sky (Paperback)
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An unforgettable story of friendship and feuds in a remote Armenian mountain village
In an isolated village high in the Armenian mountains, a close-knit community bickers, gossips and laughs. Their only connection to the outside world is an ancient telegraph wire and a perilous mountain road that even goats struggle to navigate.
As they go about their daily lives – harvesting crops, making baklava, tidying houses – the villagers sustain one another through good times and bad. But sometimes all it takes is a spark of romance to turn life on its head, and a plot to bring two of Maran's most stubbornly single residents together soon gives the village something new to gossip about...
Three Apples Fell from the Sky is an enchanting fable that brilliantly captures the idiosyncrasy of a small community. Sparkling with sumptuous imagery and warm humour, this is a vibrant tale of resilience, bravery and the miracle of everyday friendship.
About the Author
Lisa C. Hayden’s translations from the Russian include Eugene Vodolazkin’s Laurus, which won a Read Russia Award in 2016. Laurus and Lisa’s translation of Vadim Levental’s Masha Regina were both shortlisted for the Oxford-Weidenfeld Prize. Her blog, Lizok’s Bookshelf, examines contemporary Russian fiction. She lives in Maine, USA.
'A charming novel... [It] teems with minor characters whose quirks are at times amusing and at times heartbreaking... Narine Abgaryan’s fable-like novel Three Apples Fell from the Sky is a warm-hearted story about family, friendship, and community.'
— Foreword Reviews
'At the charming heart of Three Apples Fell from the Sky, pulses the certain knowledge that 'it takes a village'—a village to bleed, to weep, and, finally, to laugh and celebrate as one.'
— Faith Sullivan, author of The Cape Ann and Goodnight, Mr. Wodehouse
'Abgaryan's folktale [is] so improbably of the moment... [her] leisurely, painstaking prose — in Hayden’s lyrical translation — is an added gift for readers at the moment, because it prompts us to adjust to the 'measured pace of existence' that is now also our own.'
— Asymptote Journal
'I loved this! A tender and quirky tale of stoicism, resilience and love. Set in a remote Russian village, it is the ultimate feel-good story of an unlikely romance and the warmth of a community, drawn with humour, empathy and an earthy, magical charm.'
— Mary Chamberlain, author of The Hidden
'With finely phrased descriptions of daily activities and homes with 'chimneys that clung to the hem of the sky,' and indelible details of complex, humble characters, this magical tale transcends familiar mystical tropes with its fresh reimagining of Armenian folklore.'
— Publishers Weekly
'Suffused with kindness, humour, subtlety and understated finesse.'
— Eugene Vodolazkin, author of Laurus
'Read this book. It's balm for the soul.'
— Ludmila Ulitskaya, author of The Big Green Tent
'Abgaryan's descriptions are beautifully written... I couldn't put this book down.'
— Un Univers de Livres blog (France)
'A superb novel... I urge you to read it.'
— Ma Lecturothèque (France)
'A perfect book for anyone who wants to learn more about Armenia: its customs, its beliefs, traditions and history... A heartfelt, delicate novel.'
— La Couleur des Mots blog (France)
'Abgaryan’s work conveys a deep belief in the resilience of humanity without glossing over the horrors of human conflict.'
'A novel about ordinary life, written with extraordinary sensitivity and tenderness.'
— Prestaplume (France)
'I loved this! A tender and quirky tale of stoicism, resilience and love. Set in a remote Russian village, it is the ultimate feel-good story of an unlikely romance and the warmth of a community, drawn with humour, empathy and an earthy, magical charm. Its characters spring from the page, with their flaws, trials and hardships, as their lives are resolved in a way that will bring a smile of satisfaction and contentment.'
— Mary Chamberlain, author of The Hidden
'The novel’s plot consists of multiple stories of very ordinary but bold and beautiful people, with so much love and humour that cannot fail to go away feeling positive and uplifted.'
— Russia Beyond
'A quiet song of a novel. A novel that opens and lingers... that sweeps you over like a wave on a beach.'
— The Book Trail
'A magical novel. It manages to be life-affirming without descending into cheap sentimentality... Abgaryan achieves this challenging balance in part through the beauty of the novel's prose, which mimics the oral storytelling of myths and legends.'
— End of the Word blogspot