The blending of the two loves, one informed by cross-cultural discoveries and humorous bumblings, the other wonderfully human in its boy-meets-girl portraiture, invites the reader to savor all things Slovak. They range from food to castles, officious bureaucrats to outdoor fairs, beery picnics to chasing girls on Easter Day Two, Slovak words with no vowels to cemeteries aglow with candles “like stilled and silent seas of light, as if someone pulled the stars down and clustered the constellations among the stone graves”.
The Rev. Dr. F. Dean Lueking,
Pastor Emeritus, Grace Lutheran Church, River Forest, Illinois
About the author
Benjamin Chandler is an American who has been living in Slovakia since 2011, working at the Center for Christian Education in Martin, teaching English and visual arts. He has an MFA from Columbia College Chicago.
This is wonderful. I loved your reading and look forward to reading the entire book.
What a wonderful story. I recommend it to anyone that has or plans to visit (or live) in Slovakia. I also moved to a foreign land (Brasil in 1973) and came home with a bride 11 years later so I was entertained with Benjamin’s journey of adaptation to a new culture, language, food and perplexing customs. As Benjamin travelled within Slovakia my wife and I relived our common experiences in Bratislava, Košice, Stary Smokovec, Banská Bystrica and Martin.
Both Len and I have enjoyed reading your book, Benjamin. I still have more to read until it’s completed. You have a way with words!
Just two small corrections:
1. we never had communism in Slovakia. We only had socialism which was seen as a transitional state to communism
2. not every woman’s family name ends with “ova”. There are some exceptions (“Rovný” – “Rovná”) that don’t even have the possesive connotation.
But it’s a great story and I actually never looked at our family names that way. I just am so used to it.