I work for a publishing house that is just launching the Croatian translation of The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer. A colleague who works with me and is not a voracious reader, despite working where she does, was delighted with the texts we were preparing for the press and is very keen to read the book.
We have not been having many conversations, bookish or otherwise, during the last couple of weeks, since work has been quite busy, but I just had to mention Flowers for Algernon to her. She had never read it. Or even heard of it. Although the story is translated, I think the novel might not be. But, even if it is, this book is not part of the school reading in Croatia.
That same day, while doing a book promotion for work, I read on Twitter that Daniel Keyes had died.
I admit, I never did manage to seek out his other work but I did teach English in a private Croatian school for a year or so and there are at least two generations of Croatian kids out there today, twentysomethings and well off, who not only speak excellent English but have heard, read and discussed Daniel Keyes and his most famous work.