A Room at the Bottom of the Sea
Published by Hena.com in Croatian, 2019
Sometimes we rely on completely unexpected ways to survive and preserve ourselves. Giana, the heroine of A Room at the Bottom of the Sea, does what she can to save herself by escaping on an ocean liner that is cruising the Carribean.
Longing for freedom and travel, she joins the assistant waitstaff and finds herself in an inhumane environment where a vast American company is exploiting people who come from underdeveloped or war-torn countries.
Although she’d thought of a job onboard a ship as something that could save her, now that she is there, she needs saving from the ship, too. She preserves her sanity by writing letters to Tea, a friend who killed herself when she was a young woman.
Tea wasn't able to keep her head above water in the hostile world, but Giana does everything she can to make a go of it. Faced by the cruel machinery of capitalism at its worst, where money rules, Giana, in her letters, saves her sensibilities, creativity, humanity—everything she'd shared with Tea when they were growing up in Croatia during the war, in bomb shelters, on beaches under shelling, and in empty Serbian vacation homes.
Only in her memories of her friendship with Tea can Giana hold tight to her sense of beauty. In her letters she reconstructs made-up words from Tea's Dictionary of lost senses, which perceives the world through the language of poetry, ignoring the sharp edges of unwanted experiences.
But the letters sent to a friend who passed away may land much closer than we expect. To learn this, we must dive into the world of Tomica Šćavina, into her Room at the Bottom of the Sea. There we find a powerful work of literature that flirts with poetry and philosophy, as well as many answers to the questions we ask ourselves when trying to chart a course on the seascape of our lives.
Return of the Genius
Published by Jesenski i Turk in Croatian, 2013
Published by Klin in Dutchin Netherlands, 2017
Nicki Terura, a quirky popcorn vendor and marijuana dealer who lives on the Adriatic island where she was born, meets a fragile, introverted inventor whose IQ soars to 180 after being struck by lightning. Pressed by the fear that her 92-year-old grandmother could fall ill and die because of the leaking roof, Nicki agrees to a dodgy job on a yacht where the “genius” and his greedy brother are experimenting with a "happy cap," an invention that one of the greatest geniuses of all time, Nikola Tesla, was involved in.
/// Croatian literary prize Sfera
/// Croatian literary prize Artefakt
/// Published in Croatian and Dutch
Selfpublished on Amazon, 2012
Translated by Ellen Elias-Bursać
A collector of kaleidoscopes and lousy relationships, Dahlia Kasper leaves her possessive alcoholic mother and moves from New York to Barcelona. Her favorite kaleidoscope becomes a gateway to another dimension where she encounters a ghost of a famous physicist from the 19th century who tries to persuade her that reality is like a moth-eaten sweater - full of holes. He needs her to help him plug up these holes and save the world from vanishing, while the only thing Dahlia really wants to save is her sanity.
Ship for Laika
Published by Jesenski i Turk in Croatian, 2011.
Psychology student Tamara wrestles in her nightmares with the essence thief, a bizarre creature that assumes the human shape and pilfers the essence of people and things, leaving behind their emptied shells. Her best friend Sasha tries to help her, but she’s also messed up with her own family problems. She’s an ex-model who suffers from neurotic dermatitis and a peculiar mindset imposed by her mother, psychiatrist who thinks that everyone around her is crazy. Sasha, a mysterious painter and an old man who is imagining that he is living inside of a gigantic cream pie in a strange way help Tamara face a long-kept family secret that could give her life a new meaning.