Oldřiška, the narrator of Iva Tajovská’s new novel The Little Lamp Was Burning Still, takes us from the beginning of the 20th century through to the summer of 1972 when the demolition of the famous Veselka Hotel in Pardubice symbolically completed her life story. As a result of her troubled family circumstances and her platonic love, she spent her youth and adulthood in loneliness and seclusion, which made her all the more sensitive to the fates of others.
The beginning of the 20th century was hopeful; the times favoured art, science, technology and progress. Through Oldřiska’s narrative, we can follow the story of Jan Kašpar, who was the first Czech to fly in a heavier-than-air machine in 1910. Equally interesting are the lives of the men from Oldřiška’s extended family who had to enlist in the Austrian army four years later. The novel examines their different attitudes towards their homeland and family and the motives that influenced their decisions. Many of those who remained faithful to their oath to the Emperor were no less brave than those who demonstrated their courage in the legions in Russia.
Twenty years later, the Nazi rampage claimed more victims among Oldřiška’s family and friends. It brought back times of uncertainty and waiting and marked a period that required new courage and sacrifice.
Alongside Oldřiška, the female perspective on historical events and human relations is provided by her sister and niece who for their love from “life would gladly part”, to use a Jaromír Erben’s verse. Their love is challenged, manifests itself in different forms and defies time.
Regular price of the printed book 298 CZK, in our E-shop 238 Kč.
E-book available for 148 CZK via this LINK.
|Original title:||A lampa ještě hořela|
|Number of pages:||232|
|Year of publication:||2022|
|Binding:||paperback with flaps|