Seven Stories Press

Works of Radical Imagination


Translated by Karen Emmerich

A brilliant work of the imagination as well as a meditation on writing itself, the story follows a biographer's investigation into the life and works of a famous, yet highly mysterious, deceased Greek author named Glafkos Thrassakis. At the crossroads where magical realism and political fiction meet, Vassilis Vassilikos's buoyant literary imagination flourishes beyond the confines of conventional narrative structures.


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“A deft and witty reflection on writing as well as a moving portrait of the artist as political exile. . . . These passages recall Kundera at his most charmingly discursive. Yet whenever the book seems to be taking a reflective, historical direction, the biographer intrudes with ever more fantastical spy-novel details. . . . By turns moving and scathingly satirical . . . Vassilikos has been too rarely translated into English; one can only hope this complex, multilayered novel will change that.”


Born in Thasos, Greece, in 1933, Vassilis Vassilikos is one of Greece’s most acclaimed novelists, having published more than ninety books, including novels, short stories, essays, poetry, and plays. His novel Z was first published in Paris in 1967, was adapted for film by Costa-Gavras, and has been translated into thirty-two languages. Among them, The Few Things I Know About Glafkos Thrassakis is taught throughout universities in Greece as a contemporary classic. Vassilikos lives in Paris and Athens.