"Brilliant . . . A work of high modernist playfulness and deep pathos." -- -- Janet Malcolm, <I>New York Review of Books</I>
From the Back Cover
A young woman is in love with a successful surgeon, a man torn between his love for her and his incorrigible womanizing. His mistress, a free-spirited artist, lives her life as a series of betrayals—while her other lover, earnest, faithful, and good, stands to lose everything because of his noble qualities. In a world where lives are shaped by irrevocable choices and fortuitous events, and everything occurs but once, existence seems to lose its substance, its weight. Hence we feel "the unbearable lightness of being."
A major achievement from one of the world's truly great writers, Milan Kundera's magnificent novel of passion and politics, infidelity and ideas, encompasses the extremes of comedy and tragedy, illuminating all aspects of human existence.
--This text refers to an alternate
About the Author
The Franco-Czech novelist Milan Kundera was born in Brno and has lived in France, his second homeland, for more than twenty years. <P>He is the author of the novels <I>The Joke, Life Is Elsewhere, The Farewell Party, The Books of Laughter and Forgetting, The Unbearable Lightness of Being, </I>and<I> Immortality,</I> and the short story collection <I>Laughable Loves</I>--all originally written in Czech. <P>Like <I>Slowness,</I> his two earlier nonfiction works, <I>The Art of the Novel</I> and <I>Testaments Betrayed,</I> were originally written in French.
Jonathan Oliver employs a husky-voiced tone that proves the right match for this darkish story, one that requires of listeners a dollop of patience. Set first in Czechoslovakia, then in Switzerland, Kundera's story tells the sometimes laborious story of a womanizing Czech surgeon forced to flee the Russian invasion and take on menial roles, giving his passion for the flesh a slighly different perspective, as he is no longer a doctor but just a window-washer. His relationship with this current female-of-choice, the interesting and puzzling Tereza, is at the center of the novel. Oliver is good, very good, pausing with great effect, having just the right amount of low-key drama and contemplative musing in his narration. He's a good fit for a book that not everyone will like, but those who stay the course will generally be pleased they did. T.H. (c) AudioFile, Portland, Maine
--This text refers to the