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It's Spring of 1992. Jevrem Andric is eleven years old, and brutal civil war is erupting in Sarajevo. At first it's just boring, as kids shut in apartments run out of ways to entertain themselves. A few weeks later, boredom is a luxury. Hell has arrived. They are trapped and face starvation and death. Jevrem's only comfort is his beloved grandmother, a tough World War II partisan who has seen everything there is to see in war. Five years later, what's left of his family has immigrated to Toronto, where spring feels like mid-winter, his grandmother is broken and ill, and sixteen-year-old Jevrem is on a rampage, drinking, doing drugs and breaking into houses with his small gang of Yugoslav friends.
When his grandmother dies, he faces a moral reckoning that compels him to try, in his own warped way, to do some good in the world - the consequences be damned.
Rudolph's voice is searing, tender and at times hallucinatory as she creates a brilliant portrait of a boy's fight for emotional survival and a family's attempt to find peace in a new land.