Ten years after the first edition of P. Delchev's Tran Tales (2007, "Slovo"), the place of the book among the significant titles of contemporary Bulgarian fiction seems even clearer, even more important - its appearance .
It is symptomatic that the collection has its own semi-hidden canon, an active memory of achievements, of the movements of Bulgarian literature - both modern and postmodern and traditional in it. Reviewers and commentators who have covered the book immediately after it has been published will also focus their attention on the contexts in which the book may be placed.
In Tran's Tales, the accumulated literary memory has undergone interpretations, transformations, is integrated at different levels, and is secondary artistic. The book is easily and unobtrusively related to a series of narratives in which the language stylizations of one order or another have accomplished their pre-set task, in which long narrative mechanisms have been played out, but also similar themes, problems in which the village and its slow, time-delayed deaths have been brought and brought.
Peter Delchev found his methods of repulsion, of removing the narrative from the shadows, of the silhouettes of his predecessors, but also of his prism through which to break Hite's wild "Men's Times", the Wolf stories about the long-standing "Serpents", Ivaylo-Petrov's "Haika" ", Radich's fierce winters, turmoil, rumors, the Emilian-Stanev's Wolf Nights, Yovkov's Legends and Dinners at the Inn, Elin-Pelin's Monastery Vine.
P. Delchev's stories can also be read "independently" - beyond any reference to periods, to authors, to metamorphoses of the genre, to works, to artistic intersections. If we do not notice and do not mark (generally speaking and conditionally) the dialogues, if we do not put in a kind of related relationship the collection of Tran's stories with Hite's "Wild ...", for example, despite the differences between them, if we neglect the fact that it is, however, a debut - the book will lose many, but it will retain its complex nature, its compositional specifics, it will retain its expressive power; no less will the author's ability to construct suggestive plots, to individually characterize characters, to poetise descriptions, to compare and merge the animal in man with the human in the animal, and so forth.
Let's compare the two editions of the collection. The first edition contains five stories and a text by Alexander Chakarov. In the reissue of Tran's Tales in 2013 (Ciela Publishing House) - in one book body with the Balkan Suite - another work was added to the cycle and the text of Al. Chakarov is missing. The new variant also has a complicated construction. In all six stories, it is traced in the domesticated and unmanned spaces of a village of Thorn and its surroundings - through key events, topos, times, through the characters. The action captured the range of peoples' national turmoil in the minds of peasants around World War I - to the present; from the forest to the house, from the killing of the wolf to the departure. It is the Good Canadian's escape that is changing the direction of reading.
In the second edition, the third short was added to the two short fiction pieces that frame the narrative. The first excerpt is not part of the story. In itself, it is a finished work and functions as an introduction to Delchev's Wolves of Days and Nights - an introduction in which the stories are pre-presented as accidental stories that one of the characters, left unnamed, indeterminate, fictitious, tells to the listener, to the person, who records to keep what is being heard. The recorded "lives for wolves" and for humans will organically turn into fiction. And formally, the monologue speech of the character narrated in the excerpt is also an address to the reader, through which they "map" the works, synthesize their inner volume, before they unfold in their artistic "geography".
The other two passages "follow" the last two stories - respectively "The Mother" (the latest in the first issue) and "The Canadian" (the sixth story included in 2013 in its closing). In the snippet, separated after the end of "Mother", we find a continuation of the first "introductory" passage. This is how the cycle is shaped, but only seemingly completed. With the "Canadian", the impending death of the village finds a hero to bear it and "carry it on its back" to portray it - the artist who will move in, the creator whose carvings will retain two sacred images for him. There are no more lives, but there are still works of art through which the village can continue in double conditionality its life. The story ends with a foreign newspaper quotation from 2007. Master Dobry, the artist, and Marianne, the woman with whom he escapes from the harsh wolf lands, already own a family restaurant known in Canada as Dobry and Marion Transky.
The sixth story extends, expands artistic time and space, raises new and important questions: about the future not only of villages but also of the nation, about the memory of Bulgarians, about the fate, successes and vicissitudes in the lives of those who have gone abroad, etc. The work returns to the first passage with the repeated idea of mixing the genera. In "The Canadian" Tseko - already lost his tavern, seized from power - echoes the words of the hero-storyteller in his opening introduction. All his fellow villagers are referred to the former innkeeper as a storyteller, as a storyteller. The first narrative - The Oath - also begins with a confrontation in the tavern, to which Tseko is a direct witness. The scene he observes, the argument over the courage to kill a wolf with his bare hands, is conveyed as a reminiscence of the character in The Canadian - the innkeeper recounts Goka Tsvetnio in Good Killed for decades. In Mother, the shepherd Strahil is credited with twenty years later on Gook's death, a death that oaths the oath of the first story. In both the pre-textual reality of the Mother and the Canadian, time has skipped over ordinary events to delay the extraordinary, the iconic. The innkeeper will remind you of the connections. And the relationships are so intricate that they create a complete, complex artistic reality.
The work added to Tran's short stories before 2013 changes the cycle, loading it with an additional circular outline, with additional meaning. The "Canadian" finishes the picture of the whole - in which several types of artistic projections of language and linguistic behavior go through, each projection having its own peculiarities, each of them being characteristic: the stylized dialect - in the dialogue, in the speech of the characters, the change in the literature (mostly in the dictionary and only partially in rhetoric) in the new regime after 1944 ("dated" and heralded at the very beginning of "Canadian" as follows: 197 ...), the language of the narrator, vol. e. literary Bulgarian and conventionally foreign language (in "translation form") as manifestation and conception of the world.
The second edition sets new tasks for the cycle and for its reader. In the last part of The Canadian, a foreign journalist already talks about Dobry and Marianne, about those who came from the wolf area. And they are no longer a tavern keeper, but others will carry and tell the "thorn stories".