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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For anyone who likes philosophical and thought-provoking fiction...

I'm going to be completely honest here :) My novel has done really well in Serbia and was even shortlisted for a couple major national awards. The English version just came out on Amazon ten days ago and I pretty much have no readership yet outside of Serbia as I've been kind of shy about marketing, not wanting to impose my book on people :( I have to work on this, I know...
To take this honesty a step further, I have to say that this book will not suit everyone's taste. It's anything but a light cozy read - it's for people who like philosophical literature (as it deals with the issue of free will and moral responsibility, heart-based faith vs. structured religion, the law of cause and effect) but also for readers who like to connect pieces of a puzzle as one of the narratives is written like a detective story. So, if anyone out there happens to like dark, intriguing Kafkaesque literature, I'd be thrilled if you checked out my novel :) Here's the link:

The Tragic Fate of Moritz Tot

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Dana -----------------

Welcome to KindleBoards, and congratulations on the book! :)

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4 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
In case anyone's interested and would like to learn more about the book, here's a review from one of Serbia's national newspapers:

by Mića Vujičić, Politika

With her first novel, The Tragic Fate of Moritz Tot (published by Stubovi Kulture, Belgrade, 2008), young writer Dana Todorovic proves that it is entirely possible to demonstrate narrative maturity in one’s first book of prose but also to avoid the usual blunders encountered in books by first-time authors.

This unusual novel – with its peculiar name and even more peculiar storyline – thematically revitalizes contemporary Serbian prose with its unique, refined humor and linguistic clarity, as well as with a consistency of style which Serbian authors often lack.

The Tragic Fate of Moritz Tot consists of two parts and runs through two parallel narratives that are quite clearly linked from the beginning. The main character of the entire story is punk rocker Moritz Tot, who, following an unexpected call from Marika Foldes of the Employment Office, becomes a prompter at the Budapest Opera.

Dana Todorović is impressive in her description of the well-profiled protagonist as he tries to cope on stage while sitting in a small, rudimentary wooden box, realizing that the text of Puccini’s Turandot is in Italian of which he can not speak a word. Aside from the fact that she is apt at developing the storyline, in those sentences her humor is at its height, but the reader can not begin to imagine the sequence of events about to unfold in this unusual story. The claustrophobic tightness of the box in which prompter Tot is squatting, as he is hidden on stage peering at the elaborate world of opera which surrounds him, will allegorically transfer to the other narrative of the novel in the subsequent chapters.

Here we meet the other main character, Tobias Keller, the Moral Issues Advisor with the Office of the Great Overseer. At this point the novel takes on a rather “Orwellian” (from the purely technical aspect it would be more precise to say: Pelevinian) dimension, along with the Kafkaesque claustrophobic tightness.

Moritz Tot is constantly being pursued by someone. At the same time, Advisor Tobias Keller is sitting in Chamber C of the Second Wing before a Disciplinary Committee – more precisely the Prosecutor – undergoing examination for the accusation of having violated the provision under Article 98a of the Overseer’s Regulations and having connected the Extraordinary Activity Device to the faculty of his free will with the intention of exerting his influence on the subject Moritz Tot – how exactly, find out on your own.

The novel thus assumes an element of the fantastic, which continues to widen the jaws of the absurd as one progresses through the story. Philosophical questions begin to arise in the dialogues between Tobias Keller and the Disciplinary Committee, as they debate over the issue of determinism versus free will, making references to Hume, etc.

Although at first glance The Tragic Fate of Moritz Tot appears complex, as whenever bureaucracy is entangled in the plot, it is essentially a straightforward and well-structured story. As paradoxical as it may sound, the novel could easily be called a thriller, but within the framework of that ultra-hybrid genre where one plot ironically builds onto the next and one topic onto another and where the prefix “pseudo” precedes every concept.

The Hitchcock-like thriller scene where the novel’s main character waits with a revolver in hand to take revenge on the man who had been pursuing him and triumphantly states: “Oh, how beautifully the tables have turned! Who’s watching whom now, Ezekiel?” – unaware that his every move is being monitored by the Advisor to the Great Overseer – is the main metaphor of Dana Todorović’s novel. This is a highly original and unusual book whose characters squat in a box to prompt lines, but when they stand up, let their voices be heard and dare to make a change – they are punished.             
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