Friday, 18 August 2017

Book review: Spaceman of Bohemia by Jaroslav Kalfar

The Blurb

Set in the near-distant future, Spaceman follows a Czech astronaut as he launches into space to investigate a mysterious dust cloud covering Venus, a suicide mission sponsored by a proud nation. Suddenly a world celebrity, Jakub's marriage starts to fail as the weeks go by, and his sanity comes into question. After his mission is derailed he must make a violent decision that will force him to come to terms with his family's dark political past.
An extraordinary vision of the endless human capacity to persist-and risk everything-in the name of love and home, by a startlingly talented young debut novelist.

My Review

Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher, Sceptre, for the ARC, in exchange for an honest review.

Wow, this really is an extraordinary book. If you enjoyed reading The Martian, then this will blow your space boots off! Life affirming, amazing, what it's like to be human, thought provoking.

Not as technical as The Martian, it is a surprisingly easy read for a book which is so philosophical and steeped in history and politics. Don't let that all put you off - seriously, I can't be doing with books which are too serious usually, but this is awesome. 

It's a magical story of one man, sent into space, with no one but his own mind for company. Until Hanus comes along, that is. Hanus challenges Jakub to reconsider his own existence, and to come to terms with the truth about his father's political past. It's thought-provoking, and shows what it means to be human. I found it life affirming.

It's also a very descriptive book, and the author takes us around the darker side of the city of Prague (yes I know it's supposed to be in space, but that's just part of the story!). 

I found this book to be an absolute gem, and I am so pleased to have read it. I've read some cracking books this year, but this has got to be one of the best.

You can buy Spaceman of Bohemia here.

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