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29

WEDNESDAY

City, Sister, Silver is a pulsating Beat dream from the former Soviet Bloc, a psychedelic odyssey through an underworld of bohemian smugglers, rock ‘n’ roll thespians, and Laotian traders carving out an existence in a post-Bolshevik Prague. It is a world in which, as author Jachym Topol suggests, frozen clocks have begun ticking again and anything is possible. The 32-year-old Topol crafts truly unusual prose, sometimes free-associating without regard for the reader’s endurance. At its best, however, City, Sister, Silver captures the spirit of Topol’s dramatically changed city with almost Joycean precision. Topol, a Charter 77 signatory and underground-rock lyricist, was at the heart of the counterculture that brought the walls tumbling down, and his kaleidoscopic vision convincingly describes the tumultuous dislocation of newly found freedom. Hear him read from perhaps the most dazzling novel to emerge from the Velvet Revolution at 7 p.m. at Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Ave. NW. Free. (202) 364-1919. (John Dugan)