Praise for Children of Our Age
‘A thrilling story of exploitation and deceit, Children of Our Age is a powerful look at the immigrant experience.’ World Literature Today
‘unflinching yet ultimately compassionate second novel … Children of Our Age is an ambitious work of great scope and power. While the book’s arresting subject matter makes it very much a story of today, the narrative transcends its era. The book is a searing exploration of the ways in which people value and degrade one another, and of how moments of impulse and whim, rather than carefully reasoned action, can change the course of our lives.’ Mary Rodgers, Los Angeles Review of Books
‘Bakalar … artfully interweaves several narrative strands in this enthralling crime novel and manages the impressive feat of humanizing thuggish brothers Damian and Igor Kulesza … Bakalar does a superb job of making him [Karol] a plausible mastermind in this realistic tale of the challenges Polish immigrants face in 21st-century London. Captivating phrasing (“There were other things, less terrible things, the Kulesza brothers were supposed to be doing”) enhances the skillful storytelling.’ Publishers Weekly, starred review
‘Bakalar does not shy away from darkness … A novel about the power of language to estrange and, occasionally, connect.’ Ania Ready, The Times Literary Supplement
‘A tense and gripping thriller.’ Marina Lewycka, long-listed for the Man Booker Prize
‘A.M.Bakalar eloquently exposes the tragic face of the immigrant experience; and this powerful story of exploited hope, perverse ambition and – surprisingly – redemption is one you will not forget. It is a tale for our time.’ William Brodrick, CWA Gold Dagger winner
‘Where I felt Bakalar excels is in her portrayals of motivated and believable people … Karol is an amazing creation … Children of Our Age is set within a Polish community in London and has a strong sense of both countries, however the story line is very much about human nature, gullibility and greed. It transcends any particular nationality … this is a though-provoking and rewarding work.’ Literary Flits
About the book
Karol and his wife are the rising stars of the Polish community in London but Karol is a ruthless entrepreneur whose fortune is built on the backs of his fellow countrymen. The Kulesza brothers, mentally unstable Igor and his violent brother Damian, dream about returning to Poland one day. A loving couple, Mateusz and Angelika, believe against all odds that good things will happen to people like them. Gradually, all of these lives become dramatically entwined, and each of them will have to decide how far they are willing to go in pursuit of their dreams.
Insightful and unforgiving, Children of Our Age is a deeply human and timely story of Polish immigrants. Sweeping between their past in Poland and their present in Britain, this electrifying novel explores the ways unlikely encounters transform lives, the limits of loyalty, and love.