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Prague Tales (CEU Press Classics) Paperback – 1 Jun 2000

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Product details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Central European University Press (1 Jun 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9639116238
  • ISBN-13: 978-9639116238
  • Product Dimensions: 21.5 x 13.5 x 3.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 564,313 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"How often is a reviewer privileged to make so marvellous a discovery?"

About the Author

Jan Neruda, Czech poet, novelist, essayist and journalist, (1834-1891) was both radical and European in outlook. Born of a poor family in 1834, he knew at first hand the life he evoked in Prague Tales. The stories in this collection date from the 1860s and 70s and reflect Neruda's enthusiasm for feuilletons, vivid sketches on the border between journalism and fiction.

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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By "tcooms" on 4 Sep 2002
Format: Paperback
There is a certain joy in discovering something all by oneself, without the help of a book review or a catalogue. I came across this collection of wonderful stories by chance, and was very fortunate to decide to buy it. Neruda and the editor Klima are among the treasures lost behind the iron curtain, now recovered. Jan Neruda was a journalist in Habsburg Prague, and with his stories he carves out the life of ordinary people with sensitivity and a lucid charm that will instantly make you fall in love with the city. One story stand out, where the protagonist falls in love a girl he sees dances and the emotion is returned by her, despite the death of her mother. In this short story the elements are described with thrilling realism, while the human feelings are given an air of the supernatural, which makes what could be a mere story into a glorious yet touching story. The stories in Prague Tales are simple yet fascinating in their description of the people in a city of many different cultures. It is a beautiful book, which simply must be read.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I first read this book in the early 90s when I lived in Prague and was delighted to find an ebook version. Jan Neruda is one of the great Czech writers and he so neatly evokes Prague's streets and way of life. This book is for those who want an insight into the Czech character, the history of Prague and it's residents. It is best read sitting outside a pub with a beer in hand.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 7 reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
perfect 10 Oct 2007
By Karen Lindsey - Published on
Format: Paperback
Neruda (the original one, from whom Pablo took his nom-de-plume) is an astounding writer. His "tales" all take place on the street that he grew up on, and they're funny/sad/touching and highly evocative. The sense of place is strong, and wonderful, and I felt reading it that I too was a nineteenth century resident of this small commnity in Prague. Whether it's a middle-aged man smitten with a pretty young neighbor, or a little boy hiding in the cathedral so he can see the ghost of Saint Vitus who supposedly says mass every midnight at his shrine, Neruda gives us people at once foreign and familiar. In a very different way, his tales remind me of Sarah Ann Jewitt's stories of life in a 19th century New England town. They share the ability to depict their communities with a quiet, intimate passion devoid of sentimentality yet full of love.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Prague Tales 15 Oct 2012
By mrelmmazur - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My wife & I had a wonderful 2 week apartment stay in Prague Sept 2012 Part of my prep is to read some literature .After struggling thru 4Kafka works & the Forrest Gump like Good Soldier Svejk books I thought I was immersed in the culture.While practicing my Czech the more English fluent Czechs admired pronunciation proceeded to conversations in colloquial English.One of them suggested reading Neruda.While familiar with the name his works were not mentioned in guidebook sections of Czech literature..My interest peeked I ordered 2 books which were home on return .
Very interesting reading mostly 8-10 page vignettes of mid 19th century life in Prague mostly Mala Strana.Having just returned from our magical trip his writing brought back very vivid memories of our trip.Especially after the mind throbbing experience of Kafka & the Soldier Svejk always landing on his feet Neruda was very refreshing.Leave the Czech psyche to Culture Shock Czeck Republic & enjoy Neruda's every day life writings .
11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
Original is great, translation is unreadable. 13 Jan 2005
By GJ - Published on
Format: Paperback
I have read this book in Czech and it's great, unfortunately, the translation is really bad. It almost feels like someone sat down with a dictionary and just looked up all the words. This really doesn't work when you are going from Czech to English. The structure of sentences is often all wrong. It is gathering dust on my shelf and I have only read about ten pages.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
The Czech Charles Dickens 10 Jun 2014
By Gunnar Mar Hauksson - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I now understand perfectly why Jan Neruda is called The Czech Charles Dickens. His storyteller is like a moviecamera describing the life in the Mala Strana district of Prague.
A Czech classic 18 Jan 2014
By David Coath - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A series of short stories. The story of the old man with the stone collection is a must for anyone who collects.

The man thought the collection was important because it was worth money , but his children tell him that it was important because of the time they spent together and the facts they learnt.


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