This image is the cover for the book Light of Seven Days

Light of Seven Days

“Bracing and lyrical . . . Reminds us that the eyes of the immigrant and the artist alike can make the familiar seem strange and the strange familiar.” —Kevin Birmingham, New York Times–bestselling author

In a debut novel that is both beautiful and devastating, author River Adams portrays the kaleidoscopic journey of a Soviet refugee leaving her past behind, while at the same time learning to embrace it in an unfamiliar country.

Orphaned when she is just three years old, Dinah Ash is raised by her beloved grandmother in 1970s Leningrad. A musical child, she finds solace in the comforts of home—the snowy winters, mugs of fresh kvass, the smell of her Babby’s cabbage soup, and summers spent in Ukraine. But as her world expands, so does her knowledge of who she is: a Soviet Jew. And she is never allowed to forget it.

After being recruited to a prestigious ballet school, Dinah finds success and love—to a point. Being Jewish, she is not allowed to tour internationally with the company. Her Catholic fiancé seems to hide her from his parents before he dies fighting in Afghanistan. And then, as a virulent wave of Nazism overtakes the country, she has no choice but to flee . . .

Sponsored by a Jewish community in Philadelphia, Dinah begins to fit the pieces of herself together—and to dance again. Finding her footing isn’t easy, but every step forward gives her the strength to persevere as she struggles with new questions of racism, religion, and identity . . .

River Adams

River Adams (they/them) grew up as a concert pianist in Soviet Russia and immigrated to America as a Jewish refugee during the collapse of the USSR. Before earning an MFA in creative writing from Emerson College, they graduated from the Delaware County Community College and Rosemont College, earned an MTS degree from Harvard Divinity School, then returned to Pennsylvania to teach world religions to college students at their alma maters. At the same time, Adams worked as a certified medical interpreter for Russian-speaking patients at Philadelphia hospitals. Over the past thirty years, they have traveled to and lived in thirty states, and fell in love with each one. Today, Adams lives in Massachusetts, writing and taking care of a big, noisy family of six humans, two dogs, and a demon disguised as a cat. They are the author of many published short stories, essays, and a biography of Leonard Swidler, There Must Be YOU. The Light of Seven Days is Adams’s debut novel.

Open Road Media/Delphinium Books