A Nail, A Rose and Other Stories

Title: A Nail, A Rose and Other Stories (original title Sept Nouvelles) Writer: Madeleine Bourdouxhe (translated by Faith Evans) Publishing House: Pushkin Press Date of Publication: October 1st 2019 (first published 1985) Rating:  5 stars ‘’All around them, the earth was black and white. A beautiful winter night-smell rose up from the black and white earth. A…

Klotsvog

Title: Klotsvog Writer: Margarita Khemlin (translated by Lisa C. Hayden) Publishing House: Columbia University Press Date of Publication:August 27th 2019 (first published 2009) Rating: 5 stars ‘’Though I had nobody to call, I often picked it up and said whatever came into my head, paying no attention to the piercing dial tone inside the receiver. I could dial…

Why We Took the Car

Title: Why We Took the Car (original title Tschick ) Writer: Wolfgang Herrndorf (translated by Tim Mohr) Publishing House: Scribe Publications Date of Publication: January 4th 2014 (first published September 1st 2010) Rating: 5 stars ‘’Ever since I was a little boy my father had told me that the world was a bad place. The world is bad and…

Gospođica (The Woman From Sarajevo)

Title: Gospođica Writer: Ivo Andrić Publishing House: Dereta Date of Publication: First published 1945 Rating: 5 stars ‘’The sky above Belgrade stretches from horizon to horizon, often tumultuous, but always beautiful. In winter, with its bright, cold and clear starry nights, in summer with its sudden showers. When it changes, becoming a thick, dark cloud that carries heavy rain and…

In the Shadow of Wolves

Title: In the Shadow of Wolves (original title Mano vardas – Marytė) Writer: Alvydas Šlepikas tr. by Romas Kinka Publishing House: Oneworld Publications Date of Publication: June 6th 2019 Rating:2 stars ‘’People appear as if emerging through a mist, a snowstorm, a winter fog; they grow dark, casting a shadow on the trampled, blood-soaked earth, and then are gone.’’…

#FairytaleFriday: Russia

                       The Frog Tsarevna Today, we travel to beautiful Russia. I don’t think Russian fairy tales need any introduction. The following is a well-known Russian tale about a prince and a frog princess. We also find it in Ukraine where the frog has been substituted…

I Am Heathcliff

Title: I Am Heathcliff: Stories Inspired by Wuthering Heights Writer: Various curated by Kate Mosse Publishing House: The Borough Press Date of Publication: July 26th 2018 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Archetypes. Stories that seem bigger than the books that contain them. Wuthering Heights is such a book. Cathy and Heathcliff are such characters.’’ I have longed and dreaded to read this…

I Who Have Never Known Men

Title: I Who Have Never Known Men (original title:Moi qui n’ai pas connu les hommes) Writer: Jacqueline Harpman Publishing House: Penguin Random House UK Date of Publication: May 2nd 2019 (first published 1995) Rating: 5 stars ‘’My memory begins with anger.’’ Yes, I found a Dystopian novel I love more than 1984 and The Handmaid’s Tale. Forty women live…

#FaiytaleFriday: Germany

If you follow me for a while, you will have discovered my deep love for fairytales and Folklore from all over the world. I am one of those weird people who support the obligatory teaching of fairytales in schools and their inclusion in the curriculum. The reason is simple and obvious: they are faithful mirrors…

The Hotel Tito

Title: The Hotel Tito (original title Hotel Zagorje) Writer: Ivana Simić Bodrožić Publishing House: Seven Stories Press UK Date of Publication: September 21st 2017  (first published 2010) Rating: 1 star Some of my favourite writers are Croatian. Talented, intelligent people whose objective view on such a delicate matter as the 1990s conflicts delivers stories that are heartfelt, evocative and…

Russian Easter Stories

Title: ΡΩΣΙΚΕΣ ΠΑΣΧΑΛΙΝΕΣ ΙΣΤΟΡΙΕΣ Writer: Various edited by Laura Averbukh Publishing House: ΝΑΡΚΙΣΣΟΣ Date of Publication: March 2005 Rating: 5 stars ‘’Yes…today there is happiness…’’, Ieronimus said in a weak voice, like a sick man who has just started recovering. ‘’There is joy in the heavens and the earth, even in Hell itself. The whole creation rejoices. Yet, tell…

Flights

Title: Flights (original title: Bieguni ) Writer: Olga Tokarczuk (translated by Jennifer Croft) Publishing House: Fitzcarraldo Editions Date of Publication: May 17th 2017 (first published September 2007) Rating: 5 stars ‘’Each of my pilgrimages aims at some other pilgrim. In this case the pilgrim is in pieces, broken down.’’ This might very well be the first time that I have…

Fear and His Servant

Title: Fear and His Servant   (original title: Strah i njegov sluga ) Writer: Mirjana Novaković Publishing House: Peter Owen Publishers (originally published by Beograd:ReVision Publishing) Date of Publication:  April 1st 2018 (first published 1999) Rating: 5 stars ‘’Like everyone else, I want gifts that come from the heart, the gift without a price. I’ve wondered this earth for such a long…

Mars

Title: Mars: Stories Writer: Asja Bakić (translated by Jennifer Zoble) Publishing House: The Feminist Press at CUNY Date of Publication: March 19th 2019 (first published 2015) Rating: 5 stars ‘’Death is typically a European film. The scenes are evocative, the atmosphere and characters charged. But in my case, death took a different form.’’ When you start reading a book and…

The Dollmaker

Title: The Dollmaker Writer: Nina Allan Publishing House: Quercus Books Date of Publication: April 4th 2019 Rating: 5 stars ‘’In 21 cases there was death but no burial; in 10, funerals but no burials; in 8, funerals but no death.’’ Dolls never found a top spot in my favourite toys list. My mum didn’t like them at all but my…

Dylan Thomas – The Collected Stories

Title: The Collected Stories by Dylan Thomas Writer: Dylan Thomas Publishing House: New Directions Date of Publication: October 17th 1986 (first published June 1st 1983) Rating: 5 stars ‘’He would think that love fails on such nights, and that many of its children are cut down.’’ Dylan Thomas is the writer who made me love poetry with his dark imagery…

Belladonna

Title: Belladonna Writer: Daša Drndić (translated by Celia Hawkesworth) Publishing House: New Directions Date of Publication: October 24th 2017 (first published November 1st 2012) Rating: 5 stars ‘’And the wind brought people who had let their plows rust; solitary people tiling the sky, reaping the harvests of summer nights, the fat grain of early straws, leaving it all unwinnowed. Instead…

Za uvek i dan više (Forever and a Day)

  Title: Forever And A Day (original title: Za uvek i dan više) Writer: Milorad Pavić Publishing House: Dereta Date of Publication: April 2nd 2012 (first published 1993) Rating: 5 stars ‘’When someone dies, this means that a stranger wanted to tell us something important. Every death is, in fact, a word. And all our deaths create a long, unread…

Visitation

Title: Visitation (original title Heimsuchung) Writer: Jenny Erpenbeck (translated by Susan Bernofsky) Publishing House: New Directions Date of Publication: September 30th 2010 (first published February 2nd 2008) Rating: 5 stars ‘’In a household where a death has taken place, the clock must be stopped at once.’’ It is easy to stop the clocks when Death has arrived in a house. The…

A Gentleman In Moscow

Title: A Gentleman In Moscow Writer: Amor Towles Publishing House: Penguin Random House Date of Publication:  September 6th 2016 Rating: 5 stars ‘’On Saturday, the twenty-first of June 1946, as the sun rose high over the Kremlin, a lone figure climbed slowly up the steps from the Moskva River embankment, continued past St.Basil’s Cathedral, and made his way onto…