Monday Starts on Saturday…

… which means New Year’s Day must start on Christmas Eve! This recent review of Andrew Bromfield’s 2005 translation of the Strugatskiis’ Ponedel’nik nachinaetsia v subbotu (1964) as Monday Starts on Saturday, by blogger Russian Dinosaur, might interest Slavonic sci-fi blog readers. Monday is quite the Yuletide classic; not only does the book feature one of the most remarkable New Year’s Eve scenes in literature (when all the research magicians determinedly return to their labs before midnight, despite the efforts by the demons on the door and the rookie caretaker to send them home), it was filmed in 1982 by Konstantin Bromberg as Charodei, a romantic comedy set in a similar institute, NUINU (in Russian, ну и ну, or, now then) – the Universal Scientific Institute of Irregular Services (Научный универсальный институт необыкновенных услуг). Charodei is now prescribed watching for New Year’s Eve, if you can resist the gravitational pull of Ironiia sud’by (The Irony of Fate, another epochal Russian seasonal romance). Happy reading/watching….


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Sibelan
    Dec 27, 2011 @ 14:12:16

    This review is a lot of fun (and inspires me to ask: does Russian Dinosaur know the Translationista blog? at ), thank you for posting and drawing it to our attention, Muireann!

    I did manage to get hold of a copy of Bromfeld’s translation on Amazon: like gold dust, indeed, but not as pricey as copies of Darko Suvin’s Metamorphoses of Science Fiction. (Yale UP should reprint! As should Macmillan reissue the Strugatsky translations, suitably updated where necessary.)

    With very best wishes,



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