Buchempfehlung der Woche

von Amanda Michalopoulou

Die griechische Schriftstellerin Amanda Michalopoulou lebt in Athen. Bis jetzt hat sie acht Romane und drei Kurzgeschichtenbände veröffentlicht. Zwei der Romane - So ist das Leben (2001) und Oktopusgarten (1999) sind in deutscher Übersetzung im Rotbuch Verlag erschienen. Für ihre Arbeiten hat sie mehrere griechische und internationale Preise erhalten, u.a. den "Kurzgeschichten-Preis der Akademie von Athen", die bedeutendste Auszeichnung für griechische Autoren. Ihre Werke wurden inzwischen in 20 Sprachen übersetzt.

Georgi Gospodinov
Physik der Schwermut
(Roman); Aus dem Bulgarischen von Alexander Sitzmann, Literaturverlag Droschl, Graz 2014.

I just finished the wonderful greek translation of Georgi Gospodinov’s Physics of Sorrow and I am still lost in its labyrinth. This is the kind of novel I love to read; a condensed lexicon of all things human, an index of the mind and the heart. It confirms my faith in the writers of my generation. Especially in the ones that rock the contemporary novel’s foundation, knowing there is no linear, tidy way to write.

Gospodinov’s narrator is suffering from extreme empathy, the kind that makes him identify with his dead grandfather, an ant in an anthill or the Minotaur himself (that misunderstood mythical monster who was abandoned in the dark in a young age, according to the author’s view). To prove his point he constructs another labyrinth, that of the text, and he wanders around fearlessly with lists of 90s memorabilia, time capsules, every possible kind of archives, even the personal items of his recruit preparing for army life, stories he buys from other narrators, Hungarian words that lead to old family secrets, thoughts about the rights of animals, about the crazy and the depressed, cities that feel like characters. And if I may share something personal; Gospodinov’s Berlin and his memories of Wannsee brought back the ghost of the frozen lake, where I spent one of the most significant winters of my life - at the LCB - in 2005.

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