This was a very rare case of a book I planned to give three stars, but was so impressed by the ending, that I upped it to four. So often I'm loving a book, only to be disappointed by a clumsy ending, or an overly explained ending that takes something magical and tries to make it concrete, reducing it to dust with the heavy hammer of rationalization. The Tiger's Wife built up a beautiful, crumbling, European folklore ambiance. It blended past with present, reality with fantasy. Most importantly, it explored what it means to find and hold onto humanity in a world of loss and death and horror. Obreht captured the magic that is our willingness to find a sense of wonder in a world of senseless violence and aching loss. And she was able to blend reality with magic, magic with reality, in a memorable and beautiful way.