Sasa Stanisic

Saša Stanišic was born in Višegrad (Yugoslavia) in 1978 and has lived in Germany since 1992. His debut novel, How the Soldier Repairs the Gramophone, was translated into thirty-one languages; Before the Feast was a bestseller and won the renowned Leipzig Book Fair Prize.


  • Inventive, funny and moving. . . . Damion Searls’s translation does justice to Stanišic’s dry wit and linguistic playfulness, and captures the tense undercurrents building throughout the book.

    —The New York Times Book Review

  • Charming. . . . This realistic portrayal of refugees will engender compassion with its humor and subtlety.

    —The Washington Post

  • [Saša
    Stanišic is] a Bosnian-German wunderkind whose gripping tale about a
    refugee family marries formal experimentation and deadpan humor amid the
    suffocating smoke of survivors’ guilt.

    —Oprah Daily

  • Saša Stanišic is a revolutionary who has found his true home in language.

    —The Rolling Stone

  • Where You Come From is a deeply beautiful book, painfully so at times, on the ties that bind us: home, family, story, language. . . . a rich tapestry whose embrace shows us a little more about the world, and a little more about ourselves.

    —Chicago Review of Books

  • Brilliant.

    —The Guardian (UK)

  • Impressive. . . . Moving and imaginative.

    —The Times Literary Supplement (UK)

  • A confident, careening novel. . . . packs in history, legend, and current events, plus a poignant choose-your-own-adventure ending.

    —Christian Science Monitor

  • A novel about how stories come to be written, transmitted and often distorted, forgotten or erased. . . . Stanišic is a versatile writer and moments of acerbic wit—which recall the razor-sharp commentary of fellow Yugoslav-born author Dubravka Ugresic—are interspersed with poignant descriptions of unbelonging in Germany.

    —Financial Times

  • A thrilling shapeshifter of a novel.


  • Vast and multifaceted. . . . a timely antidote to poisonous political
    blame-games and sneering statements about the plight of refugees.

    —Necessary Fiction

  • The idea that Saša Stanišic’s new book brings together ‘autofiction, fable, and choose-your-own-adventure’ is too hard to resist. That’s a bold array of elements to bring together; for a book like this, that addresses the legacy of war and questions of national identity, it sounds especially compelling.

    —Vol.1 Brooklyn

  • Where You Come From is presented in a light, appealing style. . . . keen observations and scenes, all of it going down easily in a quick, solid read.

    —The Complete Review

  • Where You Come From is a triumph, funny and touching and subtly profound. As it ranges from chronicle to prose poem to folk tale, it builds a momentum that dazzles throughout. An exhilarating and powerful read.

    —Jennifer Croft, author of Homesick

  • A Speak, Memory for ‘The Garden of Forking Paths,’ Stanišic’s tour of his lost homeland is imbued with wit and affection. He knows stories are all we have, and that some stories can’t be bound by a single ending. A marvel and a delight.

    —Ryan Chapman, author of Riots I Have Known

  • Tender, intelligent, and brilliant. . . . a stunning novel that asks what it really means to be from somewhere, anywhere.

    —Kirkus, Starred Review

  • A shape-shifting self-portrait with some mesmerizing elements.

    —Publishers Weekly

  • A playful, formally adventurous novel that freely blends truth and fiction in its meditation on homelands. . . . The novel is determined to surprise and unmoor readers, perhaps in the same way the author/protagonist found the course of his own life surprising and disconcerting, with the author’s restless imagination a constant, delightful companion.

    —Shelf Awareness

  • A village fully in the present, yet rife with legends. In Before The Feast, this villagetells its own story—a novel as compelling multi-voiced chorale put in prose.

    —Leipzig Book Fair Jury Prize

  • A book like few others. Politically well-versed and stylistically a work of art.