A taut road trip from the Czech borderlands about the search for locations for a film of life.
Veronika Bendová’s novella is situated in the unwelcoming environment of the resettled Sudetenland in north Bohemia, devastated by brown-coal mining and heavy industry. The story plays out over a short span on three levels: a romantic relationship, a detective mystery, and a higher level where the central role is played by the landscape rather than a character. Two colleagues, Hugo and Irena, are scouting for a film location for a new TV series in this gloomy region which has been “depleted” on all fronts – including the artistic one – but they discover unexpected magic amongst the brown-coal corruption.
“Bendová’s second work of prose may be a novella in length, but the modest format is more than made up for by its content.”
“This new work is based on the sophisticated use of approaches to reading. This is something which many writers have found a hard nut to crack. In both cases, Bendová has passed with flying colours.”
About the author:
Veronika Bendová (1974) studied screenwriting and dramaturgy at the Film and Television Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts. Her novella Nonstop Eufrat (2012) was her literary debut, which was also translated into Spanish. She occasionally publishes short stories in magazines. An extract from the novella Vytěženej kraj (A Depleted Land, 2019) will be used for this year’s Susanna Roth Award for budding translators.