Masha is young and self-willed, she is Azerbaijani, Jew, and – when needed – also Turk and French. As an immigrant in Germany, she has been confronted with speechlessness at an early stage. Now, she speaks five languages and several others to a level “as German tourist on Majorca speak German”. She is planning her career at the U.N. when her boyfriend Elias gets seriously ill. In desperation, she flees to Israel where her past catches up with her. With a perfect balance of tragedy and comedy and with a remarkable focus on what is essential, Olga Grjasnowa tells the story of a generation that doesn’t know any borders but, in return, it has no homeland.
Der Russe ist einer, der Birken liebt (title of the English translation: All Russians Love Birch Trees) by Olga Grjasnowa has been translated to Croatian (excerpt) by Marko Žarić under the title Rusi vole breze, published by Edicije Božičević, Zagreb.