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Czech author Bianca Bellová presented her acclaimed novel, The Lake, in Ottawa

The discussion with the author took place on November 3, 2022 at the Czech Embassy in Ottawa, and was organized in kind cooperation with the Czech School Ottawa and with the support of the Czech Consulate General in Toronto.

The European Union Prize for Literature, the most prestigious Czech literary award Magnesia litera in the Book of the Year category, already more than two dozen translations into foreign languages and the enthusiasm of critics and readers - all this can be attributed to one of the most interesting Czech books of recent years, The Lake, which was introduced by the author herself in Ottawa. Set in a fictitious country with references to a past Soviet occupation and presenting a post-apocalyptic future of complete climate collapse, The Lake is a powerful and touching story of a young boy who fights his way out of a harsh environment as he searches for his mother.

After the opening of the evening by the ambassador of the Czech Republic to Canada, Bořek Lizec, the author was introduced by Jaroslava Baconová, a linguist and Czech language teacher at the Ottawa Czech School, who accompanied the participants throughout the evening. Most of the participants, especially the members of the Czech community in Ottawa, but also the wider reading community, had already read the novel, and thanks to this, a very interesting and entertaining discussion broke out about the novel, even for the author. In the end, Bianca Bellová read an excerpt from the translation of the novel, and also from her short story collection These Fragments.

The author presented the English translation of her book, made by the renowned translator of Czech literature Alex Zucker, not only in Ottawa, but also in Toronto, and will continue her North American tour with her novel The Lake  in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York.

Bianca Bellová is a Prague-based translator, interpreter and writer who has written seven novels. Following her 2009 debut, Sentimental Novel, her real breakthrough came in 2011 with her novel Dead Man, which received widespread critical acclaim and has been translated into German.  The Lake was followed by the novels Mona (2019), These Fragments (2021) and The Island (2022). Known for her great narrative talent, she is not shy to raise unsettling questions and to touch on the grand themes of our time in her writing.


B. Bellová