THE MAYA CALENDAR
Profil International, 2011, 603 pages
• 40 pages excerpts in English
• complete translation in German
The more you read this book, the more the words are transformed into images from a beautifully eerie film by a late Nouvelle Vague director, a Chabrol or a Truffaut, with an aged Michel Piccoli or a Jeanne Moreau in the leading roles. The scenery is indeed film-ready, although we are not on the Côte d’Azur or in Paris, but in Zagreb and on the Croatian Adriatic.Sabine Berking
Considered by many to be Ferić’s best work. A novel of wider scope which incorporates a novel about growing up in Zagreb in the fifties and sixties of the last century, a story about the love between Senka and Tihomir that almost lasts a lifetime and a novel about the sexual revolution in the sixties and the seventies. Ferić covers all aspects of life – happiness, love, sorrow, old age and mortality.
The former class of a high school in Zagreb will meet after many years to go on a graduation anniversary trip. The “Tramuntana” motor boat is now taking these men and women in their midsixties to the Dalmatian coast for a second time. The main character is Tihomir Romar, a gynaecologist who describes his story in numerous flashbacks. It focuses on his fatal love affair with his former classmate Senka, which takes on almost destructive dimensions and creates hell on earth for three people. With biting irony and black humour, Zoran Ferić draws a picture of the golden youth in Tito’s Yugoslavia; descendants of a new privileged class, more influenced by the new sexual mores of a social revolution. This second trip will reanimate a network of old and oppressed relationships – the forgotten behaviour patterns of adolescence will be coupled with a burgeoning senility. With lightness of touch and piercing wit, Ferić covers all aspects of life – happiness, love, sorrow, old age and mortality.
This novel was honoured with four of the most prestigious Croatian literary awards: the Jutarnji List Award for best work of prose fiction, the Vladimir Nazor Award for literature, the Zagreb City Award and Kiklop Award for best work of prose fiction.