Valerie and Her Week of Wonders

By Vitezslav Nezval, Kamil Lhotak (illustrator), David Short (translator)

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Why read it?

1 author picked Valerie and Her Week of Wonders as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

“I’m still not certain you really are a woman?” Whenever Valerie has her period she is transported to a magical if sinister otherworld (yes, this novel was written by a man). A surreal, Freudian, East European coming-of-age fairytale that lies somewhere between Alice In Wonderland and a gothic pastiche. In the 70s it was also adapted into a film that apparently influenced Angela Carter. Not unjustifiably, the teenage experience is portrayed as a disorientating, eroticized nightmare from which Valerie must use all her wiles to escape, fending off vampiric family members after her inheritance and hypocritical authority figures keen to…

From James' list on supernaturally troubled teenagers.

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