Vojtěch Matocha, Karel Osoha


Paseka, 2018, 264 pp
Language: Czech
Genre: Children’s and Young Adult, Literary fiction
ISBN: 9788074329104
Goodreads rating
79.2% (Rated by 462 users)

Adventure, mystery and nostalgia in a gripping story about the power of human knowledge.

Prašina is a mysterious, frightening neighbourhood in the middle of modern day Prague, the only place where electricity doesn’t work and no one knows why. One day it starts to expand and slowly swallows up other parts of Prague, shrouding them in darkness. There, Jirka and his friends discover a secret that can change the world. However, they are not alone. In the unlit winding lanes of Prašina they have to face dangerous opponents led by an unscrupulous businessman. What started as an adventure quickly changes into a race to save Prague and possibly the whole world from impeding darkness.

Matocha mixes thriller and sci-fi in order to emphasize the impact that all kinds of inventions have on humans. In his debut, books do not compete against cell phones, as both can expand human knowledge. A thrilling story for older middle-grade readers with illustrations by Karel Osoha, evoking a noir atmosphere.


“The gender balance of the two main characters gives a simple answer to the question of whether this is a book for boys or girls. At the same time, the characters break down stereotypes about girls being unscientific or boys being insensitive.”


“Thrilling, mysterious and adventurous with a dash of romance – this is Prašina, the debut children’s novel by mathematician and reviewer Vojtěch Matocha. […] He has produced a thriller worthy of the name, but one with a pleasing style and beautiful language, complemented by the equally authentic illustrations by Karel Osoha.”

—MF Dnes

About the author

Vojtěch Matocha (b. 1989) is a prose writer. He graduated in mathematics and now develops mobile phone apps. As a secondary school student he successfully took part in a number of literary competitions for aspiring authors. He writes reviews for the iLiteratura website. Prašina (2018) is his literary debut.

Selected published translations (1)

Truchlin Polish

Language: Czech
Title: Prašina
Publisher: Paseka
Year: 2018
Pages: 264
Genre: Children’s and Young Adult, Literary fiction