With his new novel Fish Blood (Rybí krev) Jiří Hájíček continues his line of rural prose, introducing readers to the countryside of Southern Bohemia. In 2008 Hana returns home to the village she grew up in after 15 years abroad. But the place she had imagined settling in, marrying and working as a schoolteacher has become a virtual ghost town. Seeing her father, brother and childhood friends Hana takes a searching look back and tries to heal old wounds.
After his successful 2006 Magnesia litera award winning novel Rustic Baroque (Selský baroko) set in the 1950s, Hájíček again uses the setting of a Czech village to explore very different social changes and its effect on people and communities.
“With Fish Blood Hájíček has become a master of intimate drama. The ordinary and everyday are vivid in their effect; the blend of detail is altogether plausible. At the same time the author’s informal style – no strained metaphor or affected layering of semantic imagery as freed by the postmodern imperative – always succeeds in creating the right atmosphere. ”
— Eva Klíčová, Host
“A power station and the residents’ futile struggle against it becomes the backdrop to dramatic interpersonal relationships and stories of ordinary people in unusual circumstances, narrated in a traditional manner. The author describes the plot and characters vividly and convincingly, creating a high-quality work of literature through his simple style.”
— Magnesia Litera jury
Read an excerpt
Rybí krev English
Selected published translations (2)
Rybia krew Polish
Рибя кръв Bulgarian