Mother and the Ginns (A muter meg a dzsinnek)
Author: Dóra Elekes
Illustrator: Fruzsina Kun
Editor: Dóra Csányi, Sándor Tsík
What happens when the Ginns get mother? This is a story told with gentle humour for everyone from the early teens up to read, discuss, and consider.
„Dóra Elekes’ work uses literary methods to present the everyday life of a little girl living with an alcoholic mother. The story is shocking and unsettling.
Thousands of children grow up this way in Hungary, and yet the seriousness of this problem has been downplayed for decades.
This tale, written from the point of view of someone in their early teens may help many people to a more considered opinion of the issue.“
Dr. János Szemelyácz
„Dóra Elekes’ book, Mother and the Ginns, brings us face to face with a deeply-rooted social taboo: that mums cannot be alcoholics. Whoever is, is not a mum. She’s Mother; and we don’t talk about her, so she cannot be the subject of literature, either. This taboo is not sacred, but merely represents the borders of what is forbidden, of sharp conflicts: between child and adult, sober and drunk, playfulness and shame, understanding and chaos.
The narrator of this text nonetheless navigates these borderlands with the most natural ease, avoiding all sense of pathos. But a lump appears in the reader’s throat: discomfort, rather than pain, but one not followed by catharsis.
This is a literary language that allows real problems to be discussed. It’s funny, playful, and freeing – but at the same time cold, strict, and malevolent. Just like the Ginns.”