'Farewell, Cowboy' is a tough yet poetic novel by one of Croatia's best known writers. The story is rich in local colour and sentiment, following the main character, Dada, who returns to her home town on the Adriatic coast in order to unravel the mystery of her brother Daniel's death. Daniel, young, smart and popular, threw himself under a train in mysterious circumstances a few years earlier. In her search for clues, Dada meets an array of eccentric characters and succumbs to the charms of the young gigolo Angelo, who is taking part in a film shooting on the nearby `prairie'. Slowly and painfully she discovers all there is to know about her brother's death, and how Angelo was caught up in it.In her debut novel, Savicevic playfully transposes the genre of a traditional Western drama to the contemporary world, challenging the omnipotent heroes of childhood and questioning what constitutes heroism today. The shabby suburbs of her seaside hometown provide the perfect backdrop for this tale of loss and redemption, redolent of transient glamour and unrealised small-town dreams.
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