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[ book tip by Literatur Schweiz ] Melinda Nadj Abonji was born in 1968 in the Serbian Vojvodina, when she was a girl she emigrated to Switzerland with her parents. Two home places and two kinds of freedoms. These are the experiences her second novel “Falcons without Falconers” is based on. The narrator Ildikó Kocsis tells stories from the emigration and alternates them with anecdotes from the old home in the Voyvodina. The Koscis family is happy in Switzerland. In 1993 they open up their own café in their village. Getting there, however, was a long process for her parents Rosza and Miklós, demanding strength, patience and humbleness from them. The two daughters Nomi and Ildikó help in the café but they strive toward their own freedom. They no longer want to be humiliated and insulted as foreigners.
With stylistic subtlety Melinda Nadj Abonji vividly, colourfully and wittily writes about these two aspects of a successful emigration and integration. The author reveals herself as a virtuoso stylist who manages to carry a narrative vividness into a musically flexible form. She does not fixate on recounting but rather brings forth a rhythmic structure that remains easy to read.
"Tauben fliegen auf" was awarded the Deutscher Buchpreis 2010.
(Beat Mazenauer, transl. by Anja Hälg)
Original version in German on culturactif.ch
[ Favourite quote ] «Now, as we finally drive up in our American automobile, a dark-brown Chevrolet, the colour of chocolate you might say, the sun beats down mercilessly on the little town, the sun has gobbled up the shadows of the trees and houses nearly whole, and so we drive up at noon, craning our necks to see if everything's still there, if everything's still the way it was last summer, and all the years before that. »
[ book info ] Nadj Abonji, Melinda: Tauben fliegen auf.
(Falcons without Falconers).
(Book language: Deutsch)
Jung und Jung,
Salzburg / Wien, 2010
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