What Is Written on the Tongue


Product Details

$19.95  $18.55
ECW Press
Publish Date
5.3 X 8.1 X 0.9 inches | 0.85 pounds

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About the Author

Anne Lazurko's first novel, Dollybird, won the WILLA Award for Historical Fiction. She has short fiction and poetry published in literary magazines and anthologies and is an active teacher, editor, and mentor in the prairie writing community. An award-winning journalist and no-awards farmer, she lives near Weyburn, Saskatchewan.


"This novel is the vivid and gripping story of a man caught in two brutal occupations: Sam is first a young victim of the Nazi occupation of The Netherlands in World War Two. He then becomes a colonial perpetrator as a Dutch soldier in the occupying army of Indonesia in the late forties. He suffers and then he deals out suffering. In this moving novel, Sam must search for a way to navigate his way through moral quagmires and find some kind of peace for himself and the ones he loves." -- Antanas Sileika, author of Provisionally Yours
"What is Written on the Tongue isn't an easy novel, but I highly recommend that you read it, because what it asks us to do is remember, not only the past, but also that the better angels of our own natures can transform into demons, given the right circumstances." -- Prairie Fire
"Teeming with life and drama, What Is Written on the Tongue is an ambitious, sweeping, riveting story of war, immorality, love and family. Spanning The Netherlands, Germany and Indonesia during and after the Second World War, Anne Lazurko's novel serves as a grim reminder that the oppressed sometimes become oppressors. The novel hooked me on the first page and captured me to the last." -- Lawrence Hill, author of The Book of Negroes and The Illegal
"What Is Written on the Tongue is a gripping story of frailty and resilience. Anne Lazurko's novel is a fully engaged, deeply researched study of one man's struggle to retain his humanity amid the many tragedies of war." -- Helen Humphreys, author of Field Study: Meditations on a Year at the Herbarium
"In this deft and deeply moving novel, Anne Lazurko disperses the fog of war to shine a light on one soldier's process of reckoning. As Sam confronts the enemy without and within, his creator honours the terrible vulnerability of our bodies, the essential balm of love and friendship, and the life-affirming beauty of the natural world, all the while lamenting the hell we so often make of this paradise we call home." -- Alissa York, author of The Naturalist
"Deeply moving, very informative, sincere, and solemn to the memory of all who were affected, this book really got to me. Its stage is war, but there's so much more to this author's writing and manner of conveying, so much human emotion; deep, unspoken, and respectful." -- Slightly Cracked Southern Belle blog
"Though set in a specific time period about two specific wars, this story is timeless. It addresses questions still asked today: Who are freedom fighters, who terrorists? Who are occupiers and who peacekeepers?" -- Historical Novel Society