Primeval and Other Times is a major novel with a scope and depth rarely achieved in contemporary literature. Its complexity extends beyond the vast number of interrelated characters contained in Tokarczuk's lushly imaginative narrative to the emotional tribulations of several decades in the history of a microcosmic village. Tokarczuk reminds us why we read novels: to enter a fictional world at once completely foreign and poignantly familiar. -- The Prague Post
The book struck deep chords in readers, who responded to it as if a luminous new way of presenting 20th-century Poland had been found. --The Economist
The prose of Primeval and Other Times has a strangely sedating effect in reading. Quietly powerful, it is a tale not soon to be forgotten. -- World Literature Today
Olga Tokarczuk was born in 1962 in Sulechów near Zielona Góra, Poland. A recipient of all of Poland's top literary awards, she is one of the most critically acclaimed authors of her generation. After finishing her psychology degree at the University of Warsaw, she initially practiced as a therapist and often cites C.G. Jung as an inspiration for her work, in which mythmaking has become a hallmark. Her work has received nearly every major literary award at home and abroad, and Tokarczuk's importance as a writer was recognized with her being awarded the 2018 Nobel Prize in Literature.
Drift away to the times,and people and games and fields and rivers and mushrooms of Primeval and thereabouts. So enjoyable and maybe time to revisit House of Day House of Night because for a while everything else will appear flat and dull. Olga Tokarczuk has a most amazing way with words as she floats you away from the solid to the ethereal. This is an experience you should have.
5つ星のうち5.0Brilhante e envolvente, uma fábula sobre o tempo
Primeval and Other Times conta a história de Primeval, uma vila na Polônia durante a Segunda Guerra mundial, e seus habitantes, sejam eles pessoas, animais, plantas, seres de outras dimensões e o tempo, eterno e imbatível. Retrata os horrores da guerra, violenta e desumana, e a magia da vida que renasce e se renova a cada estação. Esta é uma daquelas obras que te sugam do início ao fim. "Primeval..." toca nos detalhes que marcam nossas vidas, nas escolhas que fazemos, nos caminhos que seguimos e que nos deixam saudades. Este é um livro para viver uma vida e, paulatinamente, deixar esquecer.
Olga Tokarczuk is an amazing writer. Her books keep you on the edge of reality and fantasy. She writes extremely well and she drags you into a different world. Her books aren't easy but they are beautiful.
It takes a while to get used to the choppy writing style early on, but her sentences get longer and more interesting as the plot develops. What you have here is a tale told by many voices, many of which eventually come together to create a collage of life in this little Polish village. A very post-modern writing style and very enjoyable.
Nobel selection committees give much time, energy, and thought to the selection of recipients of their awards. This is a challenging task given the vast and rich talents that they must judge. They sometimes get it right.
The Nobel committees' selections have stimulated me to read the writings of those awarded their prize for literature. This is the first book by Olga Tobarczuk that the committee has led me to. The committee made an excellent choice! I will follow their example and read more of Tobarczuk's works!
Though I began reading "Primeval and Other Times" just yesterday I am certain that I will want to read it again to sense Tobarczuk's poetry in different times of my life. Even in English translation the words and thoughts of Olga Tobarczuk convey the beautiful whisper of the Polish language. This desire for repeated exposure is my feeling for the writings of another Nobel Laureate, Bob Dylan, that also rhythmically capture the poetry of the human condition.
It is now time for me to return to "Primeval and Other Times". I highly recommend that you take time to do the same.
5つ星のうち5.0Primeval is the Place At the Centre of the Universe!
By reading this novel, I can see why Polish author, Olga Tokarczuk, was awarded the 2018 Nobel Prize in Literature. She captured a century of Polish life in a small Southwestern Polish town. At first, the writing is impeccable and beautifully written to bring the novel alive where you as a reader are there to appreciate and enjoy the characters (larger than life or realistic).
If you've never read Olga Tokarczuk's work, this book is a good start as she slowly grabs the reader into the world of a Polish town around World War I to after World War II and during the Communism era. The book doesn't shy away from anti-Semitism and Nazis. While many characters come alive more than others, this book captured my imagination in so many ways.
There is no question that Olga Tokarczuk's literature deserved the prize. She has captured Poland in all complexities and wonders. You can see how the writer treats female characters like Genowefa, Cornspike, Ruta, Florentyna and others as human beings intertwined with the Polish landscape. They're more than just simple Polish peasants living simple lives. They're struggling to survive and thrive in barely livable circumstances.
If you wanted to know why Olga won the 2018 Nobel Prize for Literature, this book is a great start for any novice reader. I highly recommend this novel for anybody interested in Polish literature or female writers. Tokarczuk captured a portrait of Polish live in the novel.