The Cowards Author:Josef Skvorecky Josef Skvorecky is one of the leading novelists in Europe today. His ten books have been widely read in Czechoslovakia and translated abroad. "The Cowards" was written when the author was twenty-four years old. — From inside back cover: "What is The Cowards anyway? The story of a small town, its jazz, its student life, the end of the war..." — It ... more »is also the intense, personal story of Danny Smiricky and the boys in his band who somehow float above the turmoil, somehow remain the only sane human beings in a chaotic time. The cowards scoff at the self-appointed civil government, they find the regimentation of the military authorities absurd, and their only immediate thoughts - with humor, irony, and fantasy - are of the girls they have had or the girls they want.
The Cowards relates the events of the last week of the Nazi Protectorate of Czechoslovakia, of the advancing Soviets, of Danny's feelings for women, politics, sharp clothes, his saxophone, and his "image." It is a rememberance of a lost time, of a lost feeling, of a boredom with the exterior world, and a fascination with jazz and Danny's own sprawling imagination. Josef Skvorecky's book is an important statement by a major international writer.« less