Josef Škvorecký Award for Zuzana Brabcová’s ‘Aviaries’

Brabcová’s last novel was published posthumously to widespread critical acclaim.

Awards, News

Zuzana Brabcová. Photo: ČTK.

Zuzana Brabcová. Photo: ČTK.

The prestigious prize organised by the Josef Škvorecký Society is awarded to the best book of the previous twelve months.

Aviaries is an intimate diary account of a neurotically oversensitive perception of the world around us. As in her previous works, here too Brabcová works bewitchingly with language, pulsating from bare recording to supremely metaphorical language, from lyrical tropes to vulgarity, revealing motifs of being alone and lost in a world that has ceased to make sense.

Read an English excerpt translated by Melvyn Clarke here.

Zuzana Brabcová worked as a publishing editor and wrote five novels. In 1987 she was the first person to be awarded the Jiří Orten Award, despite not being allowed to publish by the communist regime. Her novel Ceilings (Stropy) was awarded the Magnesia Litera for prose. Brabcová’s books have been translated into German, Italian and Swedish. She is the daughter of the literary historian and signatory of Charter 77, Jiří Brabec, and the translator Zina Trochová. She was born in Prague on 23 March 1959 and died on 20 August 2015.