Spaceman of Bohemia (Paperback)Jaroslav Kalfar (author)
- In stock
Shortlisted for the Arthur C. Clarke Award 2018
‘With its interplanetary shenanigans and lessons in Czech history, this zany satirical debut is bursting at the seams… Spaceman of Bohemia should win many fans. It’s Solaris with laughs.’ – The Guardian
Set in the near-distant future, Spaceman follows a Czech astronaut as he launches into space to investigate a mysterious dust cloud covering Venus, a suicide mission sponsored by a proud nation.
Suddenly a world celebrity, Jakub's marriage starts to fail as the weeks go by, and his sanity comes into question. After his mission is derailed he must make a violent decision that will force him to come to terms with his family's dark political past.
Ranging from daring space epic to fast-paced thriller, this is a startlingly talented debut from a bold new voice in science fiction. Packed full of ideas it explores nationhood, history and family loyalty, offering an extraordinary vision of the endless human capacity to persist - and risk everything - in the name of love and home.
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Number of pages: 288
Weight: 200 g
Dimensions: 196 x 130 x 24 mm
'A superb debut' - Sam Kitchener, Literary Review
'Dizzyingly inventive, alternately lyrical, earthy, silly and sad.' - Kathryn Murphy, TLS
'A frenetically imaginative first effort, booming with vitality and originality . . . Kalfar's voice is distinct enough to leave tread marks . . . He has such a lively mind and so many ideas to explore . . . Kalfar has an exhilarating flair for imagery . . . He writes boisterously and mordantly' - Jennifer Senior, New York Times
'[An] excellent debut . . . This book could mark the launch of an astronomical career' - James Marriott, The Times
'Reading Spaceman of Bohemia reminded me of the thrill of unearthing Everything is Illuminated from the mound of entries to the Guardian First Book Prize' - Claire Armitstead, Guardian
'A joyfully intellectual book; the whole narrative could be read as a dream, as a clever paradigm in ways that resonate with David Mitchell.' - Ruth McKee, Irish Times
'This wonderful debut is a fine addition to the tradition of eastern European emigre writers [Vladimir Nabokov and, more recently, Gary Shteyngart and Aleksandar Hemon] producing dazzling fiction in English, their second language.' - Metro
'An incredible experience . . . I can honestly say I loved every page. Every sentence. Spaceman of Bohemia is unforgettable: a work of breathtaking scope and heart, and a reflection of humanity that's raw and strange and profound and true.' - Lisa McInerney
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“Wonderful scifi novel about life, death and the Czech Republic”
This is a rather unusual, but excellent scifi story that has you gripped from the first pages. It deals with so many big themes: national identity; changing societal norms; contracts between individuals and between... More
“Spaceman of Bohemia - Proof Review ”
A beautiful, heart breaking debut novel.
Kalfar sets up a striking, lonely world in the present and a deep, difficult world in the past.
While the style of writing is heavy and not for light reading, it is stunning... More
I spent the early part of this year glued to this book - really loved it. Brilliant philosophy, with an accessible, compelling plot. A unique combination of content and style - Part Unbearable Lightness, part... More
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