A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian is bestselling author Marina Lewycka's hilarious and award winning debut novel, now available as a Penguin Essential for the first time.
'Two years after my mother died, my father fell in love with a glamorous blonde Ukrainian divorcée. He was eighty-four and she was thirty-six. She exploded into our lives like a fluffy pink grenade, churning up the murky water, bringing to the surface a sludge of sloughed-off memories, giving the family ghosts a kick up the backside.'
Sisters Vera and Nadezhda must aside a lifetime of feuding to save their émigré engineer father from voluptuous gold-digger Valentina. With her proclivity for green satin underwear and boil-in-the-bag cuisine, she will stop at nothing in her pursuit of Western wealth.
But the sisters' campaign to oust Valentina unearths family secrets, uncovers fifty years of Europe's darkest history and sends them back to roots they'd much rather forget . . .
'It's rare to find a first novel that gets so much right . . . Lewycka is a seriously talented comic writer' Time Out
'Hugely enjoyable . . . yields a golden harvest of family truths' Daily Telegraph
'Delightful, funny, touching' Spectator
It's rare to find a first novel that gets so much right . . . Lewycka is a seriously talented comic writer (Time Out)
More than just a jolly romp with political undertones is the way it captures the peculiar flavour of Eastern European immigrant life . . . a very rich mixture indeed, as well as very enjoyable reading (Daily Express)
Funny, gritty, original ... one I adore (Independent)
Remarkable, a lovely novel (Sunday Telegraph)
An extraordinary read . . . nothing short of amazing. A rare treat, all too easy to gulp down in one greedy sitting (Spectator)
Outstanding (Literary Review)
Extremely funny (The Times)
Intelligent, lively, well written and compassionate (Financial Times)