A gothic soul by Jiří Karásek ze Lvovic

 

 

 

A gothic soul by Jiří Karásek ze Lvovic

Czech fiction

Original title – Gotická duše

Translator – Kristen Lodge

Source – review copy

 

I’m your only friend I’m not your only friend But I’m a little glowing friend But really I’m not actually your friend But I am

Blue canary in the outlet by the light switch Who watches over you Make a little birdhouse in your soul Not to put too fine a point on it: Say I’m the only bee in your bonnet Make a little birdhouse in your soul

I have a secret to tell From my electrical well It’s a simple message and I’m leaving out the whistles and bells So the room must listen to me Filibuster vigilantly My name is blue canary One note, spelled L-I-T-E My story’s infinite Like the Longines Symphonette It doesn’t rest

I choose birdhouses in your soul as I used a lightbulb in my review as a metaphor for the narrator .source 

I love it when Twisted spoon bring a new book out as they seem to choose books that firstly would never see light of day in the uk , secondly are important in the context of where they are from . Here again they have published a book from the Czech decadence movement .A counterpart of the French books at the time this book has a much darker feel than the French decandence movement books I have read .Jiří Karásek ze Lvovic was a novelist and critic .He found the modern review a well-known magazine of the time that published the best French and Czech decadent movement writers  .

But he didn’t die

He arose from bed even paler than before . The sound of his voice was more somber . He looked even more terrifying . His eyes now disturbed anyone who looked into them .They lacked luster .They harboured a secret that seemed accusatory , though it could never be expressed in words .

His struggle is beyond words in the world around him .

The book is the story of a nameless narrator and his struggle in the world he is living a world that is caught under an empire that has changed from the world he knew. He wanders the town seeing these changes around him  .As much as it is his story it is also the story of the city he lives in which is Prague the city at night jumps of the pages .He seems to be struggling with life and death as the book goes on the world around him seems to dissolve to the struggle with in him .He is the last of his line losing faith in the world around him .He even goes to churches to try to find solace but struggles too .

He left the church .

Where he wandered after that , he could no longer remember .

Today everything that had occupied his soul back then was revived .He knew he would not be able to escape the dank tomb of the past into which he had descended , to free himself from the enchanted circle of overwrought blood and nerves in which he had unexpectedly become entrapped from this atmosphere could not be approached without incurring punishment .

A torture soul which even the church can’t save .

This is one dark book a man’s soul is on the line and we see how he struggles with it .A way to look at the book is the context of when it was written in 1905 the world has just entered a new century . The Habsburg empire is harked back to a lot the book  this of course in hindsight is showing the first ripples of the start of world war one . The narrators worry about his own world and the city of Prague maybe show the greater picture a world that has grown a modern age the is fast approaching them . This shows how one man gets caught in the world in flux  and like those early lightbulb he is trying to light his night , his dark places  but maybe is about to burn out! .

Have you a favourite book from the decadent movement  ?

 

 

12 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Cathy746books
    May 02, 2015 @ 14:07:55

    This sounds excellent, very dark. The cover design is also beautiful.

    Reply

  2. Melissa Beck
    May 02, 2015 @ 14:32:33

    Great review! I’ve recently become interested in Czech lit. I’m currently reading The Sound of the Sundial.

    Reply

  3. roughghosts
    May 02, 2015 @ 15:11:48

    Nice review. I have not read this yet but I do have a copy. It is a simply gorgeous book to hold and look at – not one for the kindle for sure!

    Reply

  4. kaggsysbookishramblings
    May 02, 2015 @ 16:02:17

    Twisted Spoon volumes are lovely aren’t they? This sounds great Stu!

    Reply

  5. Bina
    May 02, 2015 @ 17:49:10

    You bring the best books to my attention! Haven’t read anything of the decadence, maybe my library has a copy.

    Reply

  6. 1streading
    May 02, 2015 @ 20:05:16

    This sounds very interesting – I may have to get it. I take it its Lvovic’s first appearance in English?

    Reply

  7. winstonsdad
    May 02, 2015 @ 21:52:23

    I think grant although he may have years ago and been lost over time it was first out in 1905

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

May 2015
M T W T F S S
« Apr   Jun »
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728293031
%d bloggers like this: