The new novel by Stephan Collishaw is 'The Song of the Stork', about Jewish partisans in World War II.
The book opens with Yael, a fifteen year old girl on the run. She has escaped from a German raid on her town and is alone. Not knowing where to turn she goes to the farm of a young Russian. Aleksei is considered mad by the town’s inhabitants. He is mute and lives on his own, shunning company. With reluctance Aleksei takes her in and as the brutal winter advances a brittle relationship forms between the two. As the war continues Yael joins a Jewish partisan group fighting and surviving in the woods. The novel is a love story and a coming-of-age tale. It is about a young woman finding her voice as around her the voices of her community are extinguished.
Stephan is the author of two previous novels. The Last Girl and Amber (Sceptre). The Guardian wrote that The Last Girl was ‘astoundingly complex...tense, vivid, effortlessly real.’ He has been published in America and in translation. Stephan has taken a ten year break from writing as he has been consumed by his job as deputy head of a secondary school in Nottingham. Recently however he has managed to liberate some to in which to return to fiction.