In the Black Pine Forest
Upon the invitation of PEN International, two writers meet at the female writer’s home in the Black Pine Forest. The dialogue of these two writers who meet in a secluded forest village following experiences of incarceration and penalisation such as prison, exile and migration, clashes with the story of the gradual silencing of a writer by the hand of state and society, and the loss of his own voice in the forlornness of the Black Pine Forest.
In his fourth novel, Fatih Balkış takes the reader on a philosophical and literary journey in the dark forest of the mind and the blind lands of violence. For those who want to hear the cry of censorship, oppression and deterritorialization from which the whole world suffers, echoed in the Black Pine Forest...
The Turn of Luck
Once the soul tastes this disquiet, it is impossible for it to calm down. Whatever the outcome, this opera, which no one cares about, must be completed. I have the power to do that, I believe in that. I have thought it through, I have spent enough time, I have read it over and over again and in each reading, I felt that my soul was enlightened. That is something. Something that comes before everything else in life for me...
Fatih Balkış continues his masterfully written series of stories about artists. The Turn of Luck tells the story of a musician who has no purpose left other than composing the opera that will be his masterpiece. The reader will no doubt read about the musician’s sentiments and views on everything, and first and foremost music, however, the “real hero”, the piano, will soon enchant the reader. Carried from one place to the next, people restlessly circling it, a magnificent piano that creates its own artist...
Theatre has turned into a great big farce, I said to myself. This company, the drama we are performing, the journey itself and the country are nothing but a grand old farce. A whole lot of nonsense and stupidity. Nonsense, all of it. People, collectively, want to believe that some kind of truth exists in theatre, a power not yet discovered.
We are in the dining car of a train heading from Istanbul to Ankara. A theatre company has set out to stage Chekhov’s The Seagull. When the company enters the dining car, a member of the troupe sits in a corner and begins to observe his surroundings; the writer, the director, a documentary filmmaker and actors... As he observes them, our narrator also takes a stroll down his own memories, the friendships of university years that ended painfully...
Fatih Balkış’s Farce is a tightly woven text full of references. When do our youthful dreams abandon us? Or do they stick like a lump in our throat? Why is it so difficult for art to open its doors to people? And does not the injustice that has pervaded every field of life also exist within the ideals of art? In Farce, Fatih Balkış tells a story of great depths in restricted space. With attentive inner observations and striking viewpoints, even if desperate, he once again seeks the way out in art.
The protagonist of the novel is a recently divorced translator: While trying to cope with the disappointments she has faced in life, she also takes care of her son Güneş. She is middle-aged now, harbours no hope for the future and work isn’t going well either. She has lost her trust in people, and especially men.
Yet life is full of surprises, you may suddenly, unexpectedly find yourself on a sea trip, having left everything behind. And journeys are experiences that comprise different doors. They may transport you to a completely different life, to a completely different point. And it is such a trip where our translator is drawn to love, to which she thought she had closed all her doors.
Balkış casts his lens broadly, writes his novels without excluding any literary approach and in Gravity, presents a meticulously drawn inner portrait of contemporary human beings.