In Bernard Malamud's book The Fixer, what happens to Yakov at the end of the book? Was the conversation with the Tsar imagined?

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At the end of the book, Yakov is indicted and is taken to his trial at the courthouse in a carriage. There are mobs of people outside, both Jews and anti-semites, who scream at him and hurl insults. A bomb goes off and the carriage is damaged, but it makes its way to the trial. The book ends with him on his way to his trial, with no clear indication of the outcome.

He does not actually converse with the Czar, but he realizes much about life in Czarist Russia, primarily that his situation mirrors that of many oppressed people, and that Russia is, in a way, a giant prison.

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shaibil | Student

Yes, he was dreaming.

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