By turns lyrical and philosophical, witty and baffling, A School for Fools confounds all expectations of the novel. Here we find not one reliable narrator but two unreliable narrators: the young man who is a student at the 'school for fools and his double. What begins as a reverie (with frequent interruptions) comes to seem a sort of fairy-tale quest not for gold or marriage but for self-knowledge. The currents of consciousness running through the novel are passionate and profound. Memories of childhood summers at the dacha are contemporaneous with the present, the dead are alive, and the beloved is present in the wind. Here is a tale either of madness or of the life of the imagination, in conversation with reason, straining at the limits of language; in the words of Vladimir Nabokov, an enchanting, tragic, and touching work. Sasha Sokolov was born in 1943 in Canada, the son of a high-ranking Soviet diplomat. Sokolov studied journalism at Moscow State University and attempted to escape from the USSR, for which he was imprisoned. In 1975, he was allowed to leave the country following an international human rights scandal. The manuscript of A School for Fools, his first novel, was smuggled out of the Soviet Union that same year, and published to great acclaim in the west.A School for Fools has been translated into over twenty languages. Sokolov is the recipient of the prestigious Andrei Bely Prize in 1981, and of the Pushkin Prize for Literature in 1996. He is also the author of novelsAstrophobia and Between Dog and Wolf, and of a book of essays In the House of the Hanged.