Crumbs by Miha Mazzini
Orginial title Drobtinice
Translator Maja Visenjak-limon
Source – review copy
It was strange after reviewing The germany lottery in January by Miha Mazzini for the Scottish based publisher Freight books to issue for the first time this books Crumbs it is also known as The Cartier Project .This book was out in the US about ten years ago and written in 1987 .So I was thrilled to read another novel by Mazzini after enjoying The germany lottery so much .
Asa child I loved Guilvers travels .The only children’s book where the her shits and pisses .And even thou that hadn’t really been written for children .It just never happens to anybody else because you can’t live without doing it ,you get a feeling that you’re different a dirt complex .
This tickled me as it is so true it only that book I remember this happening .
Now The book was published in 1987 it does to remember that it is set in a working town ,where the main industry is a foundry .We meet Egon he is a writer ,in fact a writer in the model of the characters of books from Paul Leppin or Knut Hamsum Egon is a man living on the edge struggling for his art and also kicking against his art as he rants about writers at times .He is a chancer ,womanizer and idealist in some ways .He is chasing a dream of a life he may never have but also at the same time he is viewing the country around him change ,of course this is the time the Yugoslavia start to split back up to the smaller states that originally made it up .We also have a chase by Egon for a bottle of the after shave Cartier pour L’homme .Egon is a user in many ways and constantly with his band of friends tries to make the most of the world around him .
The postman was putting letters in mailboxes ,We said hello and exchanged a few polite sentences .No I didn’t intend returning to the post office .Maybe we’d have a drink another time .
I was struck because the main character in German lottery was a post man and now here is an Ex postman .
Now this book is a lot gritty than the German lottery and in some ways a far more complex books their is a lot of aliuson in this book the after shave maybe is a metaphor for statehood Egon maybe is a the nation struggling to capture the riches and promise that a dream like a fancy bottle of aftershave can bring you .Freight choose this as it feels the situation Egon is in and the Yugoslavia of the time when it is wanting to split is similar in some ways to the current Scottish situation with the vote for independence due .It was his début Novel and wrote it whilst working as a night-watchman .writing in the day this gave the novel its choppy style as he was looking after his daughter and had to keep checking her .Egon is a character that is based in a type of character that is slightly different from the usual ones in Slovenian fiction .I watched a great interview with Miha about the book here .The style he says is absurdist and it is we follow the country around Egon falling apart and he is focused else but other events are happening .The book was made into a film .I found a clip here .It shows the Punk ethos and that Egon is a punk ,I hadn’t got this so much from the book more just a bohemia type with a dark edge .
I love the cover to this one as well .