The Washington Post
The Twelve Little Cakesby Dominika Dery
Equal parts testimony to the struggles of a bygone era and a love letter to a bright-eyed childhood that no outside force could dim, this is Dominika Dery's acclaimed memoir of Communist-era Czechoslovakia. See more details below
Equal parts testimony to the struggles of a bygone era and a love letter to a bright-eyed childhood that no outside force could dim, this is Dominika Dery's acclaimed memoir of Communist-era Czechoslovakia.
The Washington Post
- Penguin Publishing Group
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 6.40(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.20(d)
- Age Range:
- 14 Years
Meet the Author
Dominika Dery was born in Prague in 1975. As a girl, she danced and performed in the national ballet and national theater companies of Czechoslovakia. She is the author of four collections of Czech poetry and a play. The Twelve Little Cakes is her first book in English.
- Sydney, NSW, Australia and Cernosice, Prague, Czech Republic
- Date of Birth:
- March 7, 1975
- Place of Birth:
- Prague, Czech Republic
- State Conservatory of Prague, Czech Republic, and Ecole Internationale de Theatre Jacques Lecoq, Paris, France
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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I found this book enchanting and read it in roughly three days. Although the pace is slow for the first couple of chapters, it quickens and never lags after that. I was intrigued by the (dissident) Dery family's ability to live a life that is admirable in the face of constant opposition and betrayal. Many of the events would have left most of us in despair, yet the Derys continually bounce back and even excell in their achievements. I consider myself astute politically, yet found this day-to-day picture of Communism eye-opening. Most amazing to me was to relate the major political events in Czechoslovakia to what I was doing at that moment here in the U.S. An important read in a light format.
I was also born in Czechoslovakia,in 1970.This outstanding book bring back so many memories! I love your book. I was 18 years old vhen we came to USA your book is very truthfull. Thank you so much for sharring your life with us. The best of luck to you.
I found it hard to put this wonderful book down and practically finished it in one sitting. Dominika Dery is an exceptional writer and I highly recommend this book.
It has been a long time since I have read such a sweet, lyrical--yet feet-on-the-floor--memoir. Ms. Dery makes the words, and the memories they evoke, dance across the page. In the process, she exposes Communism for the farce that it was (and is). 'Cakes' is a mouth-watering treat. Bravo!
I bought this book because I've been to Prague and thought that her story might be insightful and an interesting read. Her book exceeded my expectations ten-fold. Her words flowed across the pages with wonderful tales from her childhood. The lessons of love and togetherness within her immediate family are a treasure. She's a young writer. So hopefully in another few years she'll consider sharing more stories where this book left off.
Because Jana and Jorda were an intricate part of the Prague Spring of 1968, they lost everything when the hardliners brought in the Russians to crush the reformists. As they struggle to earn a living both agree no more children. However, in 1974, Jana dreams of a new daughter and one year later Dominika is born.............................. For the next eighteen years, Dominika grew up in a relatively happy home although poverty was the norm in the Prague suburb of Cernosice. There Jana was the prime bread winner writing books for the State Economic Institute that her bosses claimed as theirs while earning a small pittance. Though an educated intellect, Jorda did odd physical jobs when he could get employment. In fact the most employed member of the household was TV star, Barry the St. Bernard. Because Dominika has an upbeat open personality and indirectly her parents encourage this, she and her family were in trouble in a village with moles and traitors willing to turn in a loved one to the state without remorse............................. This engaging memoir provides a deep look into Czechoslovakia just after the Russian tanks occupied the country. Readers will see the impact on those who followed Dubcek (one of the tragic figures of the previous century) as they tried to remove the corruption out of Communism and grant freedoms to the people before folding to the Soviet military might. THE TWELVE LITTLE CAKES is an interesting period piece that showcases the Cold War at one of its coldest moments................................... Harriet Klausner