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Synopsis

Described by the Contemporary Review as 'original, delightful literature' and by the American poet John Guzlowski as 'a highly acclaimed Anglo-Polish novel', The Black Madonna of Derby tells the story of three generations of a Polish immigrant family living in the UK in the Sixties and Seventies. It is the only novel published about the generation of Poles and their children who came to Britain during and immediately after the second world war. The novel's matriarch is a haughty, aristocratic woman, fiercely proud of her culture but who also nurtures dark secrets about her past. Her daughter has known great suffering during the war but she is determined to start afresh and, with her husband, is trying to gain a foothold in the new British society. Their three children, all born in Derby, struggle between the pull of their heritage and their need to belong in the land of their birth. These conflicts produce funny, sad and ultimately tragic consequences.

About The Author:

Joanna Czechowska is the daughter of a Polish airforce pilot who came to England during the war and met her English mother at a dance. She was born and brought up in Derby and studied history at University College London. She now works as a journalist. The Black Madonna of Derby, published in Polish under the title Goodbye Polsko, is her first novel.

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