Memory Wall

Anthony Doerr

In the luminous title story, a young boy in South Africa comes to possess an old woman’s secret, a piece of the past with the power to redeem a life. In ‘The River Nemunas’, a teenaged orphan moves from Kansas to Lithuania, and discovers a world in which myth becomes real. And in ‘Afterworld,’ a woman who escaped the Holocaust is haunted by visions of her childhood friends in Germany, yet finds solace in the tender ministrations of her grandson. The stories in Memory Wall show us how we figure the world, and show Anthony Doerr to be a master of the form.

Reviews of Memory Wall

  • ‘It’s fair to say that Anthony Doerr is doing things with the short story that have rarely been attempted and seldom achieved. The stories in Memory Wall have such scope and depth that they hit as hard as novels three times their length. Doerr has set a new standard, I think, for what a story can do.’ Dave Eggers

    ‘Ambitiously wide-ranging and inventive, Doerr’s six stories movingly investigate the ways in which we are nothing without memory.’ Sunday Times

    ‘Doerr is a lusciously good stylist.’ Guardian

    ‘If this book’s wisdom can be summed up in a single line it is this one, from ‘Afterworld’: ‘Within the wet enclosure of a single mind a person can fly from one decade to the next, one country to another, past to present, memory to imagination.’ That thought informs Memory Wall many times.’ Janet Maslin, Scotsman