Wednesday, 5 September 2018

#WorldReads - Five Books From Poland

If this is your first visit to my WorldReads blog series, the idea of the posts is to encourage and promote the reading of global literature. On the 5th of each month I highlight five books I have read from a particular country and you can see links to previous countries' posts at the end of this post as well-known as finding out how to join in the challenge.

Click the book titles or cover images to visit their Literary Flits book review pages. Or click the bookshop names to buy your own copy. (Bookshop links are affiliate links so I would earn a small commission from your purchase.)

This month we are going to Poland!
Enjoy!

Children Of Our Age by A M Bakalar

The Book Depository
Wordery
Waterstones
Amazon

Karol and his wife are the rising stars of the Polish community in London but Karol is a ruthless entrepreneur whose fortune is built  on the backs of his fellow countrymen. The Kulesza brothers, mentally unstable Igor and his violent brother Damian, dream about returning to Poland one day. A loving couple, Mateusz and Angelika, believe against all odds that good things will happen to people like them. Gradually, all of these lives become dramatically entwined, and each of them will have to decide how far they are willing to go in pursuit of their dreams.


Collected Stories by Bruno Schulz

The Book Depository
Wordery
Waterstones
Amazon

Collected Stories is an authoritative new translation of the complete fiction of Bruno Schulz, whose work has influenced writers as various as Salman Rushdie, Cynthia Ozick, Jonathan Safran Foer, Philip Roth, Danilo Kiš, and Roberto Bolaño. Schulz’s prose is renowned for its originality. Set largely in a fictional counterpart of his hometown of Drohobych, his stories merge the real and the surreal. The most ordinary objects—the wind, an article of clothing, a plate of fish—can suddenly appear unfathomably mysterious and capable of illuminating profound truths. As Father, one of his most intriguing characters, declaims: “Matter has been granted infinite fecundity, an inexhaustible vital force, and at the same time, a seductive power of temptation that entices us to create forms.”


Dancing Bears by Witold Szablowski

The Book Depository
Wordery
Waterstones
Amazon

In the tradition of Ryszard Kapuściński, award-winning Polish journalist Witold Szablowski tells remarkable stories of people throughout Eastern Europe and in Cuba who, like Bulgaria’s dancing bears, are now free but long for when they were not. He describes hitchhiking through Kosovo as it declares independence, arguing with the guides at the Stalin Museum, and sleeping in London’s Victoria Station alongside a homeless Polish woman. Dancing Bears is a fascinating portrait of social and economic upheaval, and a lesson in the challenges of freedom and the seductions of authoritarian rule.


Sour Apple by Jerzy Szyłak and Joanna Karpowicz

The Book Depository (unavailable)
Wordery (unavailable)
Europe Comics
Amazon (unavailable)

By all appearances they are a happy couple. Married, religious, hardworking. What happens behind closed doors, however, is a secret, even to those closest to them. “Kwaśne jabłko” (Sour Apple), written by Jerzy Szyłak and illustrated by Joanna Karpowicz, tells a story of domestic abuse, a story of a victim and persecutor. This story of violence spiraling out of control brings no hope, instead playing on emotions and powerful illustrations, painted with acrylic on canvas-textured paper, to create a unique atmosphere of horror. It is violence as seen by a painter.


Identity Unknown by Karolina Wojciak

The Book Depository
Wordery
Waterstones (unavailable)
Amazon

After the tragic death of his mother, sixteen-year-old Krystian lives in poverty in Warsaw, Poland, with his violent, alcoholic father. Their fights grow more intense until finally his father throws him out. Homeless and fighting for survival, Krystian has to put aside his sensitive nature and become a criminal.
Lena, after a freshman year spent away from home, returns to the seaside town of Sopot between semesters, convinced that it will be another boring summer with her despotic father, a powerful lawyer. Instead, new friends show her what it feels like to make her own choices.


That's it for September's WorldReads from Poland. I hope I have tempted you to try reading a book from this country and if you want more suggestions, click through to see all my Literary Flits reviews of Polish-authored books! If you fancy buying any of the five I have suggested, clicking through the links from this blog to do so would mean I earn a small commission payment.

You can join in my WorldReads Challenge at any time! Simply read 1 or more books from a different country each month, write a post about it/them, grab the button below and add it to your post. Don't forget to pop back here and Comment your link so I can visit!




Instructions: Select all code above, copy it and paste it inside your blog post as HTML


If you missed any earlier WorldReads posts, I have already 'visited' America, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, India, Iraq, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Russia, Scotland, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and Zimbabwe.

In October I will be highlighting five books by South Korean authors. See you on the 5th to find out which ones!

9 comments:

  1. I don't read many books set outside the US and UK mainly becuse of the genres I read! I do have some apocalypse and horror from South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Canada to enjoy though.

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    1. The Polish books I've read so far have all been surprisingly dark

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  2. Thanks for sharing these! I’ve read a few horror books by Polish authors. I didn’t like the books very much. Horror is pretty hit-or-miss with me.

    Aj @ Read All The Things!

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    1. I struggle with horror to so tend to avoid the genre. I'm too squeamish for the gruesome scenes

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  3. I don't think I've read any books by Polish authors, this is an interesting idea.

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    1. I'm interested by how literature styles and fashions vary between countries

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  4. I don't think that I have read any books by Polish authors. I really need to branch out a bit.

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    1. Poland wasn't one of the best WorldReads countries for me. Their fiction seems to have a particularly violently dark vibe to it - based on these ones I found anyway

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  5. Hey, Stephanie! I'm Vinny and I'm blogging over ArtsyDraft.com. This is such an interesting meme! I just featured this meme on my blogging meme & link-ups directory. I hope you don’t mind! But if you do, please let me know! :) x

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