russian author of several novels as well as numerous prosaic and poetic works
lives in Russia, in Moscow
Valeria Narbikova was born in 1958 in Moscow and is a graduate of the renowned Gorky Institute of Higher Literary Studies. Until 1998 her work was little published and remained largely unnoticed, being in disagreement with the aesthetical expectations and the sympathies of the literary establishment.
Descending in a straight line from the universalist Russian literature of Nabokov and Berberova, she is one of the rare contemporary Russian authors whose works are published by the prestigious American publishing house Ardis (one of Nabokov’s publishers) which has contributed to her international renown. She has written ten novels and many other literary works, which have been translated into several languages and published in Germany (by Suhrkamp), in France (by Albin Michel), in Hungary, Holland, Italy, Czechoslovakia and Japan. In the recent years her texts have also regularly appeared in Moscow literary journals.
Since the Perestroika she belongs to the most celebrated writers of her generation in Russia. Her refined, out-of-phase style is a reference for men of letters. Her books are strikingly fresh, perceptive and bright.
The style of Valeria Narbikova is refined and out of phase with common reality. This has been an obvious obstacle to the broader appeal of her work, but has made her style a reference for connoisseurs. Her bright and insightful writing strikes by its freshness. Nothing in common with the stale literary chow by former Soviet writers that fills the Russian sections of French bookshops. A pleasant surprise for the Western reader. Here is a writer of Marguerite Yourcenar’s stature, without a doubt.
a word from the author
«All in this world converges to a single desire – to bathe. All thirst can be quenched but one, only one, cannot – to bathe… We all take planes: to make war, to go places, to do business. And all these planes carry us aboard because we are dying to bathe. And until the end of times we shall crave and thirst for it – to bathe...»
The Plane of the First Face. And of the Second (1989)
An Equilibrium Between the Light of Day Stars and Night Stars (1990)
Hell Say Yes – Yes Say Hell (a palindrome in Russian: Ad kak da – Ad kak da) (1991)
Greeting the Green (1992).