One Year in Berlin/Foreign Bride - two novellas by Marina Raydun

Marina Raydun's first published work of fiction is a compilation of two separate novellas—"One Year in Berlin" and "Foreign Bride."

"One Year in Berlin" is a story of Rachael—a strong-headed granddaughter of a Holocaust survivor who finds herself having to live in Berlin for at least a year because of her husband's job. Though she believes she is strong enough to not be held back by her family's history, its fears and prejudices, she is rather traumatized by it all. In Germany, Rachael feels herself growing increasingly unstable as her new life becomes riddled with nightmares and visions. What will become of her marriage remains to be seen when she feels a certain connection to her young German neighbor.

"Foreign Bride" is a tale of two people from two different worlds. They find each other in the context of Moscow's "mail-order bride" industry. Sofiya is a young translator with untamable red hair, while Bobby is a middle-aged accountant from England. Despite the calculated manner in which they met, their feelings for each other seem genuine. Still, however, their insecurities and mutual mistrust eat away at their fragile relationship. Alternating chapters show us the early stages of the pair's courtship in Moscow and the turmoil of their married life in London.