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Osip returns home to a remote island in the Mediterranean, hoping that it will provide him a haven after the traumas of war.
On his arrival, he narrowly escapes death at the hands of Bostan, a supreme feudist. The island, he discovers, is still governed by the archaic code of honour which has condemned the inhabitants to perpetual bloodshed and obliterated countless families, including Osip’s own.
Helped by the aged Kokona, and by her earthy lover, Dev, Osip restores the watermill he has inherited. Soon, he and Bostan cross paths again. Beguiled by Bostan, Osip befriends him. When Bostan is ambushed by other feudists and left for dead, Osip rushes to his aid. While dressing his wounds, he discovers Bostan’s true identity.
When Bostan recovers, the two of them set out to end the eternal feuding.
A deeply affecting fable that resounds with hope.
About the Author
Moris Farhi (1935–2019) was a writer and international human rights campaigner. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and a Vice-President of PEN International, he was appointed an MBE in 2001 for services to literature. His publications include four novels, Children of the Rainbow, Journey through the Wilderness, Young Turk and A Designated Man, and one poetry collection, Songs from Two Continents.
'This is at once a disturbing fable, and a compelling story of love, jealousy and the desire for power. Everywhere we find the physical details of the Mediterranean island, the trap of ancient customs, and Farhi's own faith in the value of human life.'
'A novel bursting with an uplifting generosity of spirit and lust for life.'
'A Designated Man has warmth, energy and generosity of spirit.'
Times Literary Supplement
'Farhi has an unbearable and enthralling human touch which gives the glow of life to all he writes.'
'Like a Truffaut of the East, who prefers the pen to the camera ...'
'A powerful eloquent writer... bears comparison with the best of Graham Greene.'