2020 Longlist

Blue Jewellery


Translated from the German by Laura Wagner

2020 Longlist

When Filiz meets Yunus, he is young and beautiful, and Filiz is proud that he wants her. Against her father’s wishes, they marry when she is thirteen. Yunus is her entire universe, all encompassing, all powerful. Soon after the wedding, Filiz’s dream of living in the West with her husband, of escaping their small village in Anatolia for freedom and autonomy, comes crashing down around her. Yunus, only a few years older than his bride, turns their marriage into a prison of dependency and violence. Trapped in her mother-in-law’s house, Filiz is subjected to physical and mental abuse, forced to veil herself and treated as a house slave. When she becomes pregnant, Filiz seems to have reached her breaking point. But she endures. When Yunus moves his young family first to Istanbul and then to Austria, the life he had once promised her seems to be within reach. But there is no escaping the spiral of violence and love, which, to Filiz, have become inseparable.

About the Author

Katharina Winkler was born in Vienna and studied German and Theater Studies. She lives and works in Berlin. Blue Jewellery is her debut novel.

Librarian’s Comments

Katharina Winkler’s debut novel is based on true events and tells the story of a young woman in a rural Anatolian village who has to face terrible violence in a patriarchal society. With tight and concise prose Winkler tells a breathtaking story of a young woman’s struggle for freedom. Full of poetry, this novel is not against men or any ethnicity, but a strong voice for women. Büchereien Wien, Austria

THE AUTHOR Katharina


University of Chicago Press Books
Nominating Library


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