As an author, Lyubko has had somewhat of a cult-like following among the younger generation in Ukraine since the appearance of his novel Cult at age eighteen, which was followed almost immediately by the publication of another novel, written in early high school. He has since authored eight additional books of prose and two children’s books. One of the most widely translated Ukrainian authors in Europe, Lyubko’s books, including Cult, are available in German, French, Italian, Polish, Serbian, Bulgarian, and Romanian. Though the style of his writing has changed significantly as a reflection of his age and maturity since his early twenties, when he was dubbed “the Steven King of Ukraine,” Lyubko as an author has retained a loyal readership in both Ukraine and Germany. He is a two-time finalist of the BBC Book of the Year Award for his novels Intent! and A Bit of Darkness, and his novella Jacob’s Head is scheduled to be adapted into a movie in Ukraine in the near future. A resident of Kyiv, Lyubko has spent significant time abroad in various regions of the world.
Born 1984 in Pustomyty, Ukraine.
Currently resides in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Jacob, a tremendously talented, young composer, returns to Ukraine in his early twenties after completing his conservatory training in Western Europe. On the brink of creative frustration and feeling undervalued as an artist, he retreats from music and settles in to await the end of the world in 2012 as an uninspired audio engineer. Things take a turn for the bizarre for Jacob when he receives a request from certain influential players—identified mysteriously as “the great, dark fathers”—to compose a symphony for the opening ceremony of the Euro 2012 championship, scheduled to take place in Lviv. His father’s unexpected death, a reclusive existence in the childhood home where he has sequestered himself to work, disastrous romances, and a psyche losing its grasp on rationality challenge Jacob’s solipsistic self-perception as God the Creator and propel him into a fantastical reality. An engrossing and disturbing novella, Jacob’s Head is an intensely psychological, deeply metaphysical, and hermetically philosophical glimpse inside the mental world of a creative genius.
Translation sample available upon request.
Key words: literary fiction, novella, psychological fiction, creative genius, music
Original publication: «Голова Якова», KSD/Family Leisure Club, 2012
Anticipated word count: 35,000
English rights holder: Author