A harrowing yet often uplifting account of living and working under totalitarian rule
His [Klima's] impassioned memoir is emblematic of Czechoslovakia's struggle - and perhaps the struggle of much of central Europe - during the dark years between the Second World War and the 'Velvet Revolution' of 1989.
As a writer, Klima is more reporter than fantasist. He observes and broods and then he writes it down... Klima has never been one for account-settling and acerbity and My Crazy Century is as interesting for its ruminative account of his emotional and personal turmoils as it is for its chronicling of postwar Czech history.
More than a memoir of an extraordinary life, it is an account of an age - and of the destructiveness of successive and symbiotic forms of totalitarianism, and of a critical intelligence that survived them.