Missing Kissinger

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Missing Kissinger
AuthorEtgar Keret
Original titleגעגועי לקיסינג'ר
TranslatorMiriam Shlesinger & Sondra Silverston
GenreShort stories
PublisherZmora Bitan
Publication date
Published in English

Missing Kissinger is a second book by Etgar Keret.


The book is an anthology of surreal ambiguous and very short stories.[1] Each story is no more than couple of pages long, presented in laconic sentences with use of intentionally spare, antiliterary vocabulary.[2] About fifty stories span two hundred and fifty pages.[3] The protagonists are Average Joes " taking impossible things seriously and grave matters lightly".[2] Keret says: "I would call it subjective realism, I am trying to show things the way they feel." Keret explains that his work is influenced by Franz Kafka: "Kafka tries to reach his moral goal by disorientating the reader. A short story in this style is like a slap in the face."[4]


The book was a popular success and considered author's breakthrough creation. The daily newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth named the book as one of the 50 most important works in Hebrew. Stories from this book are now included on the Israeli high school syllabus.[4]

A review of Missing Kissinger by Todd McEwen describes Etgar Keret's locale as that of "male confusion, loneliness, blundering, bellowing and, above all, stasis. His narrator is trapped in an angry masculine wistfulness which is awful to behold in its masturbatory disconnection from the world's real possibilities and pleasures." Etgar is "not much of a stylist - you get the impression that he throws three or four of these stories off on the bus to work every morning," and his "wild, blackly inventive pieces...might have been dreamed up by a mad scientist rather than a writer."[5]


  1. ^ Louvish, Simon (13 April 2007). "Missing Kissinger, by Etgar Keret, trans Miriam Shlesinger & Sondra Silverston". The Independent. London. Retrieved 15 September 2011.
  2. ^ a b CHOUDHURY, CHANDRAHAS (4 March 2007). "Tiny tales that break the rules". Scotland on Sunday. Retrieved 20 September 2011.
  3. ^ Mathewes-Green, Frederica (19 June 2009). "$9.99". Christianity Today. Retrieved 20 September 2011.
  4. ^ a b BLAKELY, RHYS (3 April 2007). "Surreal Israel. Etgar Keret's stories plumb the strange side of the Holy Land". TIME. Retrieved 17 September 2011.
  5. ^ McEwen, Todd (23 March 2007). "Plastic people". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 17 September 2011.

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