Reading is an indulgence for me. The few pages I'm able to read in the evening before I fall asleep are a treasure.
I recently finished reading The Sound of the Sundial, by Hana Andronikova. It was translated from the Czech by David Short, and edited & adapted by Rachel Miranda Feingold.
I had the pleasure of meeting Feingold when she was in Berlin last year. She gushed about the talents of Andronikova, whose novel won the 2002 Magnesia Litera Award in the category of Best New Discovery. Andronikova died of cancer in 2011 at the age of 44.
The novel is focused on the love story between a German-Czech engineer and his Jewish wife. It weaves and leaps from Zlín, through Calcutta, Prague, Auschwitz, and the United States.
Told in a compelling manner -- from a variety of viewpoints often dislocated in time -- The Sound of the Sundial is an incredible and heartbreaking story. This first-ever English translation was published by Plamen Press, a new publishing house based in Washington, DC. Read an excerpt from the novel on the publisher's website.
You can also read Denton Loving's long-form review of the novel at The Collagist.