When Nina Knew David Grossman


David Grossman

Fiction, 2019

WHEN NINA KNEW is about three strong women – Vera, 90, her daughter Nina and her granddaughter, Gili. A bitter secret strangles their lives and pits them against each other for decades, leading them finally to travel together to Goli Otok, a barren island off the coast of Croatia. There, Vera had been imprisoned, enslaved and tortured for three years, having refused to betray her dead husband and denounce him as an enemy of the people. 

WHEN NINA KNEW is about a wound passed from generation to generation, and the awful power of secrets. These three women embark on a stormy odyssey to an accursed place, and to their past. The journey lays bare emotions – fear and love and mercy – of a kind that only families can really know. 

This is a story that is also based on imagination. Eva Panić Nahir, the inspiration for the character of Vera, was a close friend and confidante of David Grossman for twenty years. She shared with him this astonishing tale.


Rights Sold to:

Croatia: Fraktura; Denmark: Forlaget Vandkunsten; Finland: Otava; Germany: Hanser; Hebrew: Hakibbutz Hameuchad; Holland: Uitgeverij Cossee; Italy: Mondadori; Norway: Agora; Romania: Editura Polirom; Serbia: Arhipelag; Slovenia: Beletrina; Slovakia: Artforum; Spain (Spanish): Lumen/Random House; Spain (Catalan): Edicions 62; Sweden: Bonniers