With an air of experimental casualness, the protagonist works through her traumas: she doesn’t have kids, or even a long-term partner to be the father of her children. A novel that breaks down the taboo of “non-motherhood” in a not entirely predictable way.
Amálie is a Prague intellectual who is full of energy; she loves the mountains, she’s learning Japanese…and yet her life seems to have fossilized into a strange immobility. At an age when her peers are starting a family at the last minute, she is still drifting from one failed relationship to the next and – with the help of psychotherapy, getaways and psychotropic substances – trying to resolve the longstanding issues she has with her all-too-present mother and dead father. However, as she observes the world and herself through the porthole of “inert” moments, it is not without a keen sense of irony and self-reflection, which imbues this story about the end of youth, set in Prague and Japan, with an almost unbearable lightness.
“This amazing book is a wonderful follow-up to the author’s previous poetic work.”
— Krajské listy
“The inertia of the novella’s main character, Amálie, seems to permeate the ever thicker aspic of life. After a promising youthful start, her life grinds to a halt in a kind of premature resignation, a lonely life. The poet Kateřina Rudčenková thus becomes the spokesperson for a generation that enjoyed the fact it didn’t have to for so long that it eventually found out it no longer could.”
— Lidové noviny
About the author:
Kateřina Rudčenková (1976) is a poet, prose writer and playwright. Her poetry debut Ludwig (1999) and her second collection Není nutné, abyste mě navštěvoval (There Is No Need for You to Visit Me, 2001) have established her as one of the most distinctive voices in contemporary Czech poetry. In 2014, she won the prestigious Magnesia Litera Award for her collection Chůze po dunách (Walking on Dunes, 2013). She has also published a collection of interlinked short stories, Noci, Noci (Nights, Nights, 2004). Her plays have been translated and staged in various countries, including the United Kingdom as part of the Royal Court Theatre’s international residency project. Selections of her poetry have been published in Austria, Serbia, Greece, and the United Kingdom.