Winner of the 2011 European Union Prize for Literature
At the age of nineteen they handed you a rifle with a bayonet and dressed you up in a uniform … and somehow, you managed to get your hands on a little, dark brown notebook and a pen.
After the funeral, a grieving son starts reading the diary his dead father had kept during the Second World War. As he turns each page, searching for a trace of the man he remembers, a portrait of an individual unfolds; a figure made both strange and familiar through the handwritten observations, the yearnings and the confessions.
Immanuel Mifsud tells a moving story of pain, warfare, and the things that connect us. As the narrator explores the diary and his own memories, he begins to recognise the man behind the words, the father whose death could release the truth of his life.
Immanuel Mifsud was born in Malta in 1967, the youngest in a working class family of eight children. His 2002 short story collection L-Istejjer Strambi ta’ Sara Sue Sammut (Sara Sue Sammut’s Strange Stories) won the Malta National Literary award. Mifsud is a lecturer at the University of Malta, where he teaches Maltese poetry & theatre.