Though “The Shawl” and “Rosa” are two of Ozick’s most admired works of fiction—both included in Best American Short Stories and awarded First Prize in the annual O. Henry Stories collection—this is their first appearance in one paperback volume. In “The Shawl,” Rosa Lublin watches a concentration camp guard murder her daughter. In “Rosa” that same woman appears thirty years later, “a madwoman and scavenger in a Miami hotel.” In both stories, there is a shawl that can sustain a starving child or inadvertently destroy her, or even magically conjure her back to life.
“In just 70 pages, Ozick creates a masterpiece that is both modest in its aims–in its attempt to give voice to just one woman rather than a general Holocaust ‘experience’—and yet also strangely final, as though no other literary depiction of the Shoah could possibly build on its sadness and power.” —Sydney Morning Herald
“Read this great little book of Cynthia Ozick's: It contains dazzling staggering pages filled with sadness and truth.” —Elie Wiesel, Chicago Tribune
“Fierce, concentrated, and brutal, The Shawl burns itself into the reader’s imagination with almost surreal power.” —The New York Times
“[I]t is as forceful as someone grabbing your heart. The very brevity of the book in part accounts for its great impact.” —USA Today
“Ms. Ozick succeeds stunningly in bringing this tragic, demented woman to life. . . . Beautiful and harrowing, these stories are a masterly achievement.” —Wall Street Journal