Valerie Freiová: Štěstí.cz

Jan 14, 2016

Štěstí.cz is not the kind of book I usually read but I got a coupon from Palmknihy after Christmas, picked out some books, and this one was free so I added it to my cart. The fact that it was free made me little wary at first, but it turned out to be a nice amusing read.

A high school teacher moves to Prague after her divorce and has to start her life again. This also means finding a man to share her life with. Initially she tries matchmakers but soon moves to online dating where she gets to meet the most bizarre men — from young guys looking for sexual experience to egocentric businessmen to deviants to absolute losers looking for hook ups to an old timer looking for a care taker. I’d take those characters to be completely over the top unless a friend of mine wasn’t going through very similar experiences right know.

On one hand the sad sacks, absolute lack of manners, ambitions, humility and empathy make for a very bleak image of men. The main character sets off on her quest being very meticulous, preparing for each date and being nervous, but the sequence of terrible dates chips away at her resolve, and she gets more and more efficient in sorting out all the men and dealing with them. Some of the encounters are pretty depressing and some even dangerous. On the other hand many make you laugh because of her pragmatic approach and sense of justice which she doesn’t loose. The end comes quickly and suddenly, when she meets a nice guy who actually listens to her and is interested in her for herself and not just as a item to be checked out on some list of must-haves.

To sum up, Štěstí.cz is a nice short book. At times, it’s bleak and sad, at others it’s simply funny, and it has a happy ending. What more could you want from a free book?