Have you ever wondered what life would be like if the events of November 1989 had a different outcome? How would Czechs live now if communism was ongoing, and they remained divided within and from the rest of the world by an iron curtain?
Alena Mornštajnová, one of Czechia’s leading contemporary novelists, returns with another surprise. Her latest work is the dramatic story of an ordinary family divided and brought to confrontation by the great events of one November night. We follow the path of Marie Hajná, as she is arrested and then sentenced to twenty years in prison for her part in the demonstrations. The likelihood that she will see her children grow to adulthood is slight, but she refuses to give up hope. And she has letters to keep her going.
The story of a young girl unfolds alongside Marie’s. Magdalena is taken from her parents and placed in a ‘sanatorium’ for the raising of communist cadres. One day, the two destinies intersect – with a result that contradicts the hopes and wishes of both individuals.
Alena Mornštajnová has written a stirring, spellbinding tale of what might have happened in her homeland but did not. What she describes is not so different from life in many places in today’s world.