This memoir, described by Doris Grumbach as “unusually elegant and meditative,” is once more available with an updated “Afterword” by the author. Golden Prague seemed mostly gray when Ms. Hampl first went there during the dark days of the Cold War in quest of her Czech heritage. In that bleak time, no one could have predicted the political upheaval awaiting Communist Europe and the city of Kafka and Rilke. Hampl’s subsequent memoir evoked Czech life under socialism, examining what it means to be engaged in the struggle of a people to define and affirm themselves against brute force. Reissued after the tenth anniversary of the Velvet Revolution, A Romantic Education includes an extensive updated “Afterword” based on Hampl’s annual return trips to Prague and the Czech countryside. This book provides an introduction to what was once the unknown “other Europe” behind the Iron Curtain and one of the continent’s hottest travel destinations.

“ . . . a quarry of richly imagined lines.”
New York Times Book Review  

A marvelous memoir written in an elegant style that glitters like water and light. It is a moving search for one’s identity, for the burden of history, and for the beauty and poetry that illuminate that history.”

Pat Conroy A Romantic Education W.W. Norton (originally published by Houghton Mifflin)
ISBN: 0393319059
A New York Times Book Review Notable Book of the Year
Winner of the Houghton Mifflin Literary Fellowship