2014 READERS' PRIZE of PUBLIC BOOKSTORES (GREECE)
Alki Zei, the "grande dame" of Greek literature, narrates the story of the years of her youth, between 1925 and 1945, which determined her future path. In her exciting narration, a whole era revives, animated by the presence of famous Greek personalities of the arts and literature. In addition to being a memoir, Alki Zei's biographical narrative reveals remarkable examples of human behaviour in a completely unpretentious manner.
Now it was the summer, the marble kitchen table was warm, and I was finally a Writer. I missed Thodora though. 'Not now, come back later on. She's working!' Work? I was simply revelling in it. Sometimes I'd hear a discreet knocking at the kitchen door: it was Miranda - Mrs Triantaphyllou - who'd been to see our play at the puppet theatre with Mummy. She knew I was in here working, and she'd bring me a glass of chilled lemon juice made with real lemons and real sugar. Even Lady couldn't possibly be getting real lemon juice to drink, I mused wryly.
"I needed a good memory and much love in order to write the story of my life. In a novel, you can say whatever you imagine, you can move your heroes as you like, you can make them say whatever you think. But when the persons are real, you are not allowed to make the smallest mistake, especially when there is no longer anybody there to agree with or contradict you. Fortunately enough, there is my sister, whose memory is infallible and her life is entangled with mine. As soon as she read my book she said: 'That's how we lived, that's how those we met and loved were'. And I asked her: 'Now that you recalled our story, would you have preferred to have lived another life?' 'Absolutely not!' she replied spontaneously. 'Absolutely not!' I also added." Alki Zei
"With a Faber Number Two Pencil is a book that every book lover wants to have in his library. It is a spiritual gem of today's publishing production."