…haven’t seen a piece on Andrey Kurkov all that often.
From The Financial Times:
“Long before two novels about a depressed writer in Kiev who lives with an even more depressed penguin became best-sellers in the west, Kurkov, who has been translated into 23 languages, was needling the authorities back home.
The genius of his sparse satires, which lampoon Russia and the Ukraine as places brutalised by shortages, bribery and gangsters, is their intimacy and compassion. Penguins, he says, do everything the same way, generation after generation. “In this sense they are similar to Soviet people,” he suggests.
”Suddenly, when the Soviet software… “ he pauses and corrects himself with a gale of laughter. “No, hardware, very hardware, was broken, defunct, they didn’t know what to do and found themselves disorientated, separated from reality. Both characters in these books are, in one sense, Soviets and in another, disorientated penguins.” Ukrainians, by the way, he likens to a “friendly, happy, very often lazy animal” and also a smell: cinnamon.”
Leave a Reply