MADE IN SLOVENIA

ALEŠ ČAR

Beletrina, 2007, 190 pages

Leaving Slovenian pathos aside or not, short stories of Aleš Čar present our small city without redundant sentimentality. They show a wide range of mentally different habitats, who despite their difference continually melt into collective picture of our time.

Maša Pfeifer | Airbeletrina

Made in Slovenia is a book which does not give any answers but if we listen carefully it does offer deepest existential questions. For this reason and due to its unique composition the book remains intriguing, open and up-to-date.

Tanja Petrič | Literatura

Translation rights sold: Poland (Biblioteka Balkan), Serbia (Rende), Czech Republic (Duhapress), Macedonia (Magor)

In short story collection Made in Slovenia Aleš Čar did something that is very difficult to do – he caught Zeitgeist on three printed pages (which is the length of the stories), he caught daily routines into fiction starting with public news accessible to everyone and finishing with private worlds and little stories with an emphasis on the individuals and their destiny.

The short stories collection Made in Slovenia is sort of a logical continuation of Čar’s previous prose works, though at the same time it represents a new level in his op us. This is due to his circularly concluded concept with its own rules. Each story opens with a quote from the press in the year 2006 and that very quote serves as a trigger of the story, sort of recordings of the reality turning into fiction. This quotes are actually a simple local chronicle, Made in Slovenia chronicle, yet at the same time the chronicle of the present global moment we live in, regardless of our state borders. The reality, which at a certain point breaks into inner worlds, crushes at individual micro universes
and changes them but nevertheless leaves enough space for everything that has nothing to do with this reality. Fifty stories of this book very precisely describe main neuralgic everyday events, various situations which try to comprise the reality. Actually, the reality is reflected in the intimate worlds of his heroes whereas the effect of these reflections may sometimes be comical and sometimes tragic, sometimes on the edge of the surrealism, but always very successful. Čar is a great master of minimalism – as he proved with his previous works already – a writer who manages to write a complete story and build a complete world on a very small space.
Made in Slovenia collection shows an author who is the analytical eye of our time, a prosaic who very well knows what to do with this tragic reality impudently offering itself as literary topic and who very subtly, so to say filigree, builds the worlds of fiction that function also above it and goes much further than the quotes the stories grow out of. Čar is a master of wide range of emotions, tonalities and intensities; he simply knows how to write a witty story that is neither banal or tragic nor pathetic or grotesque, without crossing the border of good taste, realistically keeping the story functioning as good fiction. His writing is full of witty dialogs, convincing descriptions, suggestive atmosphere and urban language.