A key work of 90s Czech literary fiction about drugs, money, faith and redemption.
Jáchym Topol is the most-translated Czech author of his generation, lauded for his imaginative storytelling and his inventive use of language. Melding fiction and documentary, with a dash of black humor on the side, he zeroes in on the agonies and injustices of the totalitarian past, in his own country and throughout Central and Eastern Europe.
Angel Station takes its title from the bustling Metro stop in the Prague district of Smíchov. Until the gentrification of the late 1990s, it was a rough-and-tumble, working-class neighborhood with a sizeable Roma and Vietnamese population. Topol’s novel, in sparse yet poetic language―agilely brought into English by the author’s longtime translator Alex Zucker―weaves together the brutal and disturbing fates of an addict, a shopkeeper, and a religious fanatic as they each follow the path they hope will lead them to serenity: drugs, money, and faith.
More information on the publisher’s website.
“Topol’s prose can veer into Jack London territory: Hooks might ‘find a drug for the night, a woman, a gun, or all of it combined’. By presenting Smichov as a microcosm of the tangled-up times at the end of communist rule, Topol offers Angel Station as an intriguing spaced-out supplement to the grander scale and ambition of City Sister Silver.”
—James A. Hopkin, The Times Literary Supplement
“With its harsh colloquial language, colorful descriptions, and heavy focus on drugs, the novel recalls nothing so much as Irvine Welsh’s cult classic, Trainspotting (1996). […] A graphic, grungy tale of addiction and consequences.”
Information about the original Czech edition
Other selected published translations (4)
Der Engel exit German
Ange exit French
Anděl: L’incrocio dell’Angelo Italian