The Cellist of Sarajevo

The Cellist of Sarajevo

Downloadable Audiobook - 2011
Average Rating:
Rate this:
"A spare and haunting, wise and intelligent novel, The Cellist of Sarajevo is a testament to the endurance of the spirit and the subtle ways individuals reclaim their humanity in a city ravaged by war." "In a city under siege, four people whose lives have been upended are ultimately reminded of what it is to be human. From his window, a musician sees twenty-two of his friends and neighbors killed by a mortar attack. In an act of defiance, the man picks up his cello and decides to play at the site of the attack for twenty-two days in their memory. Elsewhere, a young man leaves home to collect drinking water for his family and in the face of danger must weigh the value of generosity against selfish survivalism. A third man, older, sets off in search of bread and distraction, and instead runs into a long-ago friend who reminds him of the city he thought he had lost, and the man he once was. As both men are drawn into the orbit of cello music, a fourth character - a young woman, a sniper - holds the fate of the cellist in her hands. While she protects him with her life, her own army prepares to challenge the kind of person she has become." "A novel of great intensity and power. The Cellist of Sarajevo explores how war can change one's definition of humanity, how music affects our emotional endurance, and how a romance with the rituals of daily life can itself be a form of resistance"--Jacket.
Publisher: [Franklin, Tenn.] : Naxos AudioBooks, 2011.
ISBN: 9789629549510
Branch Call Number: eAudiobook OverDrive
Characteristics: 1 online resource (1 sound file)

Related Resources


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Sep 18, 2016

It seemed like I'd seen this as a film because I could 'see' the actions as they were happening. Excellent read/audio I've already heard 3 times & will again in time as there was much I missed the first time. Little jewels about life, human nature - did I just write human nature? What a sad, insightful book.

Aug 02, 2013

I had read this book when it first came out but decided to listen to it this time around. Enjoyed the cello music and found the story to be just a haunting the second time around.

Booktraveler Jan 21, 2012

This was a very thought provoking book set during the siege of Sarajevo. The author did a great job of developing the characters and building suspense through the story. It was interesting to get a feel for what motivated the different characters and how they dealt with hardship, fear, loss etc.

I did a cursory review of that period in Kosovo which helped fill out the details of what provoked the siege, parties involved etc. I was surprised to learn that there was a famous musician Vedran Smailovic known as the "Cellist of Sarajevo" who regularly played his cello in ruined buildings during the Siege – most notably performing Alinoni’s Adagio in G Minor.

I enjoyed listening to this book on CD with the accompanying cello music.

Jan 21, 2011

Not only does this book in it's brilliant simpliciy talk of the war torn Sarajevo, it calls on us to reflect on the many realities of life in general.
Well worth the 5 hours.

samdog123 Jun 25, 2010

I'm always careful what sort of compact disc I choose to listen to in the car. If they're too wordy, I know they're better off being read the old fashioned way! This book is truly elegant in it's simplicity--an uncomplicated, moving storyline, terrific characters you feel you have met. What a vivid picture of war torn Sarajevo...really quite horrific what these characters deal with on a daily basis. Painful to listen to and very, very real. This book definitely did not disappoint me...I'm glad I finally got around to reading/listening to it.


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at SMPL

To Top