The Stone Fields: Love and Death in the Balkans
Why this book?
In the summer of 1996, Ms. Brkic joined a Physicians for Human Rights forensic team in Eastern Bosnia to excavate the mass graves of the Srebrenica massacre. Ms. Brkic, who grew up in Northern Virginia, had family connections in the Balkans. Her grandmother, Andelka, was from Herzegovina, in a small village among limestone hills. The family survived the Second World War and the Communist takeover of their country. Her father escaped from Yugoslavia in 1959 and settled in America.
Stone Fields juxtaposes the family story with the story of the summer Ms. Brkic spent on the forensic team in Tuzla and with her friends and relatives in Zagreb. The author portrays the many ways that people can lose their homes—through war, genocide, political oppression, emigration, family discord—with heartbreaking clarity, always aware of the dignity, as well as the tragedy, of the survivors’ lives.