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WO Book Club

Exodus 1974 by Alex Frishberg

‘In summer 1973, my parents sent me to a camp for a month. A 10-year-old boy, I was away from home for the first time ever. When my dad came to visit me on a weekend, he immediately wondered if I had fun there. I told him the truth, “One of the mates called me […]

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The Skull by Oleh Shynkarenko

Where do the origins of the so-called ‘Russian World’ begin? According to The Skull, in a remote Siberian village whose residents are unable to tell reality from fantasy. Their historical consciousness – or rather collective mind – is dominated by an archetypical idea of supporting ‘a righteous fight’ against Russia’s eternal as well as imaginary foes. […]

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Amsterdam – Kyiv. And a Little Bit of Saint Nicholas by Halyna Rys

This story begins at an airport when two suitcases are confused because they are alike. In the best traditions of melodrama, one belongs to a woman, the other – to a man. Who are these strangers whose paths accidentally cross? One character is Torn between her career and her family, Olena from Ternopil harbours a […]

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Andriy Lyubka: One of the greatest happiness I have is the ability to wake up without an alarm clock

~ one of Ukraine’s youngest writers, novelists, poets, translators, and essayists offers us some thoughts ~ I can characterise myself in four words: disciplined, ambitious, self-confident, choleric. If there were a fifth word, it would be “cute”. For many years now I’ve been on the lists of all possible competitions. I even have a wall […]

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Malkuth by Ostap Ukrayinets

  Have you ever heard about the legendary City of the Sun? If so, it is Stanislav (previously part of Poland and the Austro-Hungarian Empire, now known as Ivano-Frankivsk in Western Ukraine). The city was established in the mid-17th century as the citadel of the famous Polish Potocki noble dynasty. Designed by French and Italian architects, Stanislav’s fortress […]

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Home for Dom by Viktoria Amelina

My name is Dominique, Dom – for short. They say, dogs cannot recognise themselves in mirrors. Anyway, I can guess what I look like. I am a nonstandard white poodle. Too tall. With long (not curly) hair that gets easily tangled and fancy pom poms on my legs. The fur on the back of my […]

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The Orphanage by Serhiy Zhadan

It’s January 2015 in the Donbas region. Pasha – the main protagonist – is a 35-year-old state-paid secondary school teacher who lives in a small village near a railway station. Pasha teaches Ukrainian but never speaks it beyond the school. He shares an old house, built by German prisoners after WWII, with his elderly father […]

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The Schengen Story – A Lithuanian Novel

Borders are abolished, gates have opened – on 21 December 2007, Lithuania joins the Schengen area, granting its residents access to any place in Europe. Three young Lithuanian couples who made friends at a rock festival have a Pre-Christmas get together at the small farm area of Pienagalis in a remote village to celebrate the historic […]

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