In this “irresistibly eccentric romp, ” the author Milan Kundera has called “our very best writer today” celebrates the power and the indestructibility of the written word The New York Times Book Review. A fable about the power of books and knowledge, “finely balanced between pathos and comedy, ” from one of Czechoslovakia’s most popular authors Los Angeles Times.
Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age New York Review Books ClassicsNYRB Classics #ad - Hrabal, one of the great czech writers of the twentieth century, developed a unique method which he termed “palavering, as well as an inveterate haunter of Prague’s pubs and football stadiums, ” whereby characters gab and soliloquize with abandon. Speaking to a group of sunbathing women who remind him of lovers past, this elderly roué tells the story of his life—or at least unburdens himself of a lifetime’s worth of stories.
. As the book tumbles restlessly forward, and the comic tone takes on darker shadings, we realize we are listening to a man talking as much out of desperation as from exuberance. Rake, gossip, aesthete, drunkard, raconteur extraordinaire: the narrator of Bohumil Hrabal’s rambling, rambunctious masterpiece Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age is all these and more.
Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age New York Review Books Classics #ad - Thus we learn of amatory conquests and humiliations, of military adventures and domestic feuds, of scandals both private and public, of what things were like “in the days of the monarchy” and how they’ve changed since. Part drunken boast, part metaphysical poem on the nature of love and time, part soul-rending confession, John Banville, this astonishing novel which unfolds in a single monumental sentence shows why he has earned the admiration of such writers as Milan Kundera, and Louise Erdrich.
I Served the King of England New Directions ClassicNew Directions #ad - Eventually, he falls in love with a Nazi woman athlete as the Germans are invading Czechoslovakia. Ditie is called upon to serve not the King of England, but Haile Selassie. In a comic masterpiece following the misadventures of a simple but hugely ambitious waiter in pre-World War II Prague, who rises to wealth only to lose everything with the onset of Communism, Bohumil Hrabal takes us on a tremendously funny and satirical trip through 20th-century Czechoslovakia.
First published in 1971 in a typewritten edition, i served the king of england is "an extraordinary and subtly tragicomic novel" The New York Times, telling the tale of Ditie, then finally printed in book form in 1989, a hugely ambitious but simple waiter in a deluxe Prague hotel in the years before World War II.
I Served the King of England New Directions Classic #ad - It is one of the great moments in his life. He becomes a millionaire, but with the institution of communism, he loses everything and is sent to inspect mountain roads. After the war, through the sale of valuable stamps confiscated from the Jews, he reaches the heights of his ambition, building a hotel. Living in dreary circumstances, Ditie comes to terms with the inevitability of his death, and with his place in history.
The Little Town Where Time Stood StillAbacus #ad - From the flamboyant and unpredictable maryska, who scandalises the town when she cuts short her golden tresses, who always has to have a ready supply of furniture to smash when he's angry, to the eccentric Uncle Pepin, Bohumil Hrabal creates a range of enchanting and memorable characters - confirming his status as one of Europe's greatest writers.
Includes the little town where time stood still and cuttinG IT SHORT.
Total Fears: Selected Letters to DubenkaTwisted Spoon Press #ad - In these letters written to april gifford dubenka between 1989 and 1991 but never sent, more often than not, Bohumil Hrabal 1914-97 chronicles the momentous events of those years as seen, from the windows of his favorite pubs. Interspersed are fragmented memories of trips taken to britain — as he attempted to track down every location mentioned in Eliot’s “The Waste Land” — and the United States, where he ends up in one of Dylan Thomas’s haunts comparing the waitresses to ones he knew in Prague.
In his palavering, hrabal gives a humorous and at times moving account of life in Prague under Nazi occupation, and the brief euphoria following the revolution of 1989 when anything seemed possible, stream-of-conscious style that has marked him as one of the major writers and innovators of postwar European literature, Communism, even pink tanks.
Total Fears: Selected Letters to Dubenka #ad - The result is a masterful blend of personal history and fee association rendered in a prose as powerful as it is poetic.
The Loser: A Novel Vintage InternationalVintage #ad - His formal innovation ranks with beckett and Kafka, his outrageously cantankerous voice recalls Dostoevsky, but his gift for lacerating, lyrical, provocative prose is incomparably his own. One of bernhard's most acclaimed novels, the loser centers on a fictional relationship between piano virtuoso Glenn Gould and two of his fellow students who feel compelled to renounce their musical ambitions in the face of Gould's incomparable genius.
Written as a monologue in one remarkable unbroken paragraph, The Loser is a brilliant meditation on success, failure, genius, and fame. One commits suicide, witty, while the other-- the obsessive, and self-mocking narrator-- has retreated into obscurity. Thomas bernhard was one of the most original writers of the twentieth century.
The Devil's WorkshopPortobello Books #ad - Bold, brilliant and blackly comic, the devil's Workshop paints a deeply troubling portrait of two countries dealing with their ghosts and asks: at what point do we consign the past to history? But nobody knows about them'. The deepest graves are in Belarus. Returning to terezín many years later, chaos ensues, he joins Lebo's campaign to preserve the town, but before long the authorities impose a brutal crack-down, and the narrator finds himself fleeing to Belarus, where fresh horrors drive him ever closer to the evils he had hoped to escape.
A young boy grows up in Terezín - an infamous fortress town with a sinister past. The devil had his workshop here in Belarus. Together with his friends he plays happily in this former Nazi prison, Uncle Lebo, scouting the tunnels for fragments of history under the careful eye of one of its survivors, until one day there is an accident, and he is forced to leave.
Harlequin's Millions: A NovelArchipelago #ad - At once tender and scatological, playful and sombre, moving and irresistibly funny. The independent on sundaypraise for i served the King of England:"A joyful, picaresque story, which begins with Baron Munchausen-like adventures and ends in tears and solitude. James wood, the london Review of Books"A comic novel of great inventiveness.
. By the writer milan kundera called czechoslovakia's greatest contemporary writer comes a novel now in English for the first time peopled with eccentric, unforgettable inhabitants of a home for the elderly who reminisce about their lives and their changing country. Sophisticated, thought-provoking and pithy.
Harlequin's Millions: A Novel #ad - Spectator"unmissable, plus pathos, slapstick, combines extremes of comedy and seriousness, sex and violence all stirred into one delicious brew. The guardian"in imaginative riches and sheer exhilaration it offers more than most books twice its size. Something about that slab of wordage carries the eye forward, promising an intensity simply unattainable by your regularly punctuated novel.
Ed park, the new york Times Book Review. Charming, wise, and sad--and an unexpectedly good laugh. The philadelphia Inquirer"An extraordinary and subtly tragicomic novel. The new york times"Dancing Lessons unfurls as a single, sometimes maddening sentence.
By Night in ChileNew Directions #ad - This wild, a sort of lap dog to the rich and powerful cultural elite, eerily compact novel—Roberto Bolano's first work available in English—recounts the tale of a poor boy who wanted to be a poet, but ends up a half-hearted Jesuit priest and a conservative literary critic, in whose villas he encounters Pablo Neruda and Ernst Junger.
Heart-stopping and hypnotic, By Night in Chile marks the American debut of an astonishing writer. A deathbed confession revolving around Opus Dei and Pinochet, By Night in Chile pours out the self-justifying dark memories of the Jesuit priest Father Urrutia. As through a crack in the wall, by night in Chile's single night-long rant provides a terrifying, clandestine view of the strange bedfellows of Church and State in Chile.
By Night in Chile #ad - Father urrutia is offered a tour of europe by agents of opus dei to study "the disintegration of the churches, at night, he is next assigned—after the destruction of Allende—the secret, never-to-be-disclosed job of teaching Pinochet, " a journey into realms of the surreal; and ensnared by this plum, all about Marxism, so the junta generals can know their enemy.
. Soon, searingly, his memories go from bad to worse.
Mr. Kafka: And Other Tales from the Time of the CultNew Directions #ad - These stories are set variously in the gas-lit streets of post-war prague; on the raucous and dangerous factory floor of the famous Poldi steelworks where Hrabal himself once worked; in a cacophonous open-air dance hall where classical and popular music come to blows; at the basement studio where a crazed artist attempts to fashion a national icon; on the scaffolding around a decommissioned church.
Wonderful stories of communist prague by “the masterly Bohumil Hrabal” The New YorkerNever before published in English, the stories in Mr. The stories capture a time when Czech Stalinists were turning society upside down, inflicting their social and political experiments on mostly unwilling subjects.
Mr. Kafka: And Other Tales from the Time of the Cult #ad - Kafka and other tales from the time of the Cult were written mostly in the 1950s and present the Czech master Bohumil Hrabal at the height of his powers. Hrabal captures men and women trapped in an eerily beautiful nightmare, longing for a world where “humor and metaphysical escape can reign supreme. ”.
Twilight of the Eastern GodsGrove Press #ad - In 1958, kadare was selected to pursue his writing and literary studies as a graduate student in Moscow at the prestigious Gorky Institute for World Literature. Twilight of the eastern gods is a portrait of a city and a story of youth, disenchantment, and the incredible importance of the written word. Twilight of the eastern gods is kadare's fictionalized recreation of his time spent at this "factory of the intellect, novelists, and playwrights, " a place created to produce a new generation of poets, all adhering to the state-sanctioned socialist realist” aesthetic.
During his time at the gorky institute, and the caucasus all came to study, kadare was caught up in the furore over Boris Pasternak's Nobel Prize win, when the Soviet Union demanded that Pasternak refuse the foreign, bourgeois award, a kind of miniature Soviet Union where writers from deepest Siberia, Kazakhstan, or be sentenced to exile.
Twilight of the Eastern Gods #ad - Kadare’s time at the institute, the drunken nights, corrupt professors, and enforced aesthetics are fictionalized in a novel that entwines Russian and Albanian myth with history.