Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH), Hardcover, 9780547496962, 352pp.
Publication Date: March 5, 2013
Winner, Prix du Meilleur Livre Etranger
An aging Israeli film director has been invited to the pilgrimage city of Santiago de Compostela for a retrospective of his work. When Yair Moses and Ruth, his leading actress and longtime muse, settle into their hotel room, a painting over their bed triggers a distant memory in Moses from one of his early films: a scene that caused a rift with his brilliant but difficult screenwriter who, as it happens, was once Ruth's lover. Upon their return to Israel, Moses decides to travel to the south to look for his elusive former partner and propose a new collaboration. But the screenwriter demands a price for it that will have strange and lasting consequences.
A searching and original novel by one of the world's most esteemed writers, "The Retrospective "is a meditation on mortality and intimacy, on the limits of memory and the struggle of artistic creation.
"Yehoshua's intelligent and refined novel. . . about an aging Israeli director reviewing both his films and his life. . . recalls once again Faulkner's famous dictum that 'the past isn't dead. It isn't even past.'"
—Kirkus (starred review)