Chestnut Hill Press: popular Polish novelist Romuald Roman now in English

PHILADELPHIA CREAM–()–Fresh off the press, the collection of popular Polish author Romuald Roman AldekBestiary features twenty-one short stories about life in socialist Poland and how an immigrant family embraces the American dream with all its imperfections.

Romuald Roman grew up under an incomprehensible Polish bureaucracy, but lived four decades in Philadelphia, where his children were born and raised as Americans. He’s in a unique position to wrestle with the charged and often absurd history of his native land unlike his adopted America, and he has the verbal wit to entertain us while sharing some profound truths.

Recognizing the irrationality of the Soviet-controlled society of his youth and the tragedy of Polish history, Roman’s stories provide readers with deep and entertaining tales of coming of age in a wacky society. “Aldek”, the narrator and observer, diffuses his underlying angst with humour. Its plots, driven by self-delusion and emotional projection, ring true. The stories are charming yet profound, tackling themes of how to lie, tell the truth, weave the absurd with the real, and mix fantasy with reality.

James Miller, editor of Chestnut Hill Press, notes that “These stories introduce English-speaking readers to one of the most entertaining authors to emerge in Poland in the last half-century. We are delighted with the early reviews and proud to bring Romuald Roman’s fiction to English-speaking markets. In the fall of 2023, we plan to release its popular No entry zone. This moving book is described as a “perfect satire on communist-era Poland” in the Quarterly Tatry review of the original Polish edition from 2014. AldekBestiary and No entry zoneby a great Polish humorist, are aligned with Chestnut Hill Press’ mission to bring readers the very best in world literature, art and music.

Although he has successfully published two novels and four collections of short stories in Poland, Aldek’s Bestiary is Roman’s first work to appear in English. The life of the book by editors Weekly calls Aldek’s Bestiary “a dynamic, heartfelt and inviting collection of short stories” and Kirkus Reviews agrees that it is “lighthearted, displaying an ironic wit”.


Aldek’s Bestiary

No entry zone

Roman Romuald

Chestnut Hill Press