OVERRIDE

Fieldwork

A Novel

Mischa Berlinski

Picador

A National Book Award Finalist
Longlisted for the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award
The New York Magazine Best Debut of the Year
A Los Angeles Times Favorite Book of the Year
A San Francisco Chronicle Notable Book of the Year
A Chicago Tribune Favorite Book of the Year
A Seattle Times Favorite Book of the Year
A Christian Science Monitor Best Book of the Year
A Library Journal  Best Book of the Year
A Kirkus Reviews Top 10 Book of the Year
 
When his girlfriend takes a job as a schoolteacher in northern Thailand, Mischa Berlinski goes along for the ride, working as little as possible for one of Thailand’s English-language newspapers. One evening a fellow expatriate tips him off to a story. A charismatic American anthropologist, Martiya van der Leun, has been found dead—a suicide—in the Thai prison where she was serving a fifty-year sentence for murder.

Motivated first by simple curiosity, then by deeper and more mysterious feelings, Mischa searches relentlessly to discover the details of Martiya’s crime. His search leads him to the origins of modern anthropology—and into the family history of Martiya’s victim, a brilliant young missionary whose grandparents left Oklahoma to preach the Word in the 1920s and never went back. Finally, Mischa’s obsession takes him into the world of the Thai hill tribes, whose way of life becomes a battleground for two competing, and utterly American, ways of looking at the world.

REVIEWS

Praise for Fieldwork

"A Russian doll of a read . . . A story that cooks like a mother."--Stephen King, Entertainment Weekly

 

"An intoxicating journey filled with missing souls and vengeful spirits."--The Washington Post

 

"An entertainingly readable novel of ideas . . . Berlinski's narrative is brilliantly plotted and builds to a shattering but entirely credible conclusion."--Los Angeles Times

 

"A sad and powerful tale . . . Inspired and courageous."--San Francisco Chronicle

 

"An impeccably structured novel portraying two strikingly different milieus . . . Bravura storytelling."--The Seattle Times

 

"Airtight and intensely gripping . . . His treatment of both religious missionary and anthropological fieldwork is subtle and insightful. Impeccable research and a juicy, intricate plot play off in this perfectly executed debut."--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

 

"Gripping and entertaining . . . A quirky, often brilliant debut, bounced along by limitless energy."--The New York Review of Books

Reviews from Goodreads

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Mischa Berlinski

  • Mischa Berlinski was born in New York in 1973. He studied classics at the University of California at Berkeley and Columbia College and has worked as a journalist in Thailand. Fieldwork is his first novel.

  • Mischa Berlinski Copyright Louis Monier
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Available Formats and Book Details

Fieldwork

A Novel

Mischa Berlinski

National Book Awards Finalist

BOOKS FOR COURSES AVAILABLE

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

Picador

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