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Writer Nathan Englander's avenging pen
Writer Nathan Englander's avenging pen

Nathan Englander was in college when he first heard the story of Stalin's 1952 purge of Russia's top Yiddish writers. Determined that their story not die with them, he fictionalized their plight in "The Twenty-Seventh Man," the short story that led his 1999 award-winning debut collection, "For the Relief of Unbearable Urges." Soon came a novel and the next short story collection, "What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank," a finalist for the 2013 Pulitzer. But he never set aside "The Twenty-Seventh Man." It took many years and some serious editing by the late Nora Ephron to turn that story into a play, now onstage at San...

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