In My Suitcase: English Books in Zagreb, Croatia

I have this draft ready somewhere since… well… for ages. Since the memory of my last holidays are quickly fading away (there was snow piled high everywhere!), soon to be replaced by warmer weekends projects (sun! sea! books!) it’s high time I post about the bookish stuff of Croatia.

When in holidays, I’m not really into buying souvenirs… I’m into buying books (I also love to bring back local teas and beauty products, but that’s another story). So guess what we bought in Zagreb? Books of course!

The place we found there (entirely by chance!) was ALGORITAM, a great bookshop near the main square, very well stocked with English books. There was also a small shelf for Croatian books translated into English.

Mr. Smithereens chose The Day of the Lie by William Brodrick (which I’m nearly finished reading!), a novel about Communist terror and Cold war in… well… Poland.

I chose a local book: How we survived Communism and even laughed, by Slavenka Drakulic (with a blurb from Gloria Steinem). I have yet to start this one, but it promises to offer glimpses into the lives of Eastern European women during the Communist era. I’m intrigued. I don’t remember reading anything by a Croatian writer before. Any other suggestion?

PS. The picture links to a very cool website that lists bookshops about everywhere in Europe. I wish I’d thought of creating such a website myself in the first place, but they do it quite well! If you go anywhere in Europe you can check if there’s any address there. As for me, I still hope to post about great bookstores I’ll find on my trips.


9 thoughts on “In My Suitcase: English Books in Zagreb, Croatia

  1. I think you may want to look at The Bridge on the Drina by Ivo Andrić. He wrote it during World War II, but it is concerned mostly with the multi-ethnic Ottoman Empire, especially in Bosnia. I think it may have been written in Croatian, but I read it in English. It is an outstanding and humane book, but has some tough stuff in it.

  2. I always head for the nearest bookshop as well. And a librarian friend of mine must have dragged her long suffering family around practically every library in the UK. Still, at least that is less expensive than the bookshop expeditions.

    • Oh, I totally understand. When we are in places without foreign language bookstores, we also tend to visit libraries. I’ve made amazing discoveries in libraries in Denmark, Latvia or Czek Republik. So you’re friend isn’t weird! 😉

  3. Pingback: Collisions in Literary Space | Smithereens

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