Original title: Dobrodruzi hlavního proudu
This is a classic tale set in the real world of the 1990s. Pavel and Dominika get to know one another at the end of the Eighties, but the passion of their early love is followed by the gradual disintegration of their relationship. Both have the feeling that the political and social changes of 1989 have created the space in which they can realize their dreams; whereas Pavel is bitten by the business bug, believing this to be the area in which he will find himself, Dominika leaves for France to seek out her relatives and uncover her roots. The novel's plot is packed with dramatic events in which often we encounter the political realities of the Nineties (including restitution, racketeering, bankruptcy, imprisonment, the opportunity to travel). Hájíček's novel is vivid in its depictions in that the author never allows himself to be drawn away from the authenticity of his setting, nor does he allow his gaze to be deflected from observation of the developments and changes his heroes undergo, right up to the event which pitches them (as if) back to the start of their relationship. The novel as a whole poses – albeit in various mutations – a single question: Is it possible to go back and start anew?
"One might read Mainstream Adventurers as a sociologically credible tale about the awkward nature of free choice, which can be a hellish encumbrance in the headlong rush to acquire wealth. It is also a tale of opportunities which – in the post-communist business world – might not turn out quite as we plan them to. [...] In this regard, on matters of social import, Hájíček's 'first major novel' – as the book's jacket claims this to be – is perhaps major indeed. What is more, it provides evidence that one of the most evocative of today's Czech storytellers has made inroads into the mainstream of good literature."
Dora Kaprálová, MF Dnes
"From its very beginnings this author's work has been marked out by its compelling narrative style, which needs little time to pull the reader into the plot and engage his interest."
Radka Myslivečková, Lidové noviny
"This novel comes alive through its many characters, each of whom is keenly observed, the fascinating episodes of which the tale is composed and the range of its critical insight into this country's failings. Stated simply, it is a compelling work, for which the author makes effective use of the achievements of the classic novel while investing his tale with a present-day atmosphere and a sense of what it is to live in these days."
Milan Jungmann, Mosty