Novels and Short Stories by Ivana Hruba

Phoebus Klein is a vulnerable young boy from the wrong side of the tracks. He is a good, gentle soul living a sad and isolated existence deep in the heart of Pristine Mountain. Poor, friendless and with no real prospects of getting on in the world, Phoebus has but one ally, his older brother Kenny, who dreams of infamy of biblical proportions. When Kenny comes up with a plan to kidnap a woman for ransom, the innocent Phoebus is forced to take part in the crime. Put in charge of the beautiful young woman, Phoebus does his best to keep her happy while waiting for the ransom to be paid. However, not everything goes according to plan …

A Decent Ransom is a story of human weakness and yearning. Essentially a tale of redemption, the contemporary, fast-paced thriller blends pathos with trickery and intrigue, drawing the reader into the private world of a vulnerable fifteen-year-old boy, who believes himself to be the keeper of a kidnapped woman. Against all odds, the two forge an alliance with dire consequences for some.

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Shackled to a dangerous man, a young boy fights for survival in the desert.

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Absolutely Fabulous meets Desperate Housewives in this spirited tale of two merry widows whose talent for discreetly solving other people’s problems earns them a devoted fan base and a prosperous living.

Stuck in a loveless marriage with a violent man, Caroline is in need of help when she meets Lucinda, a recently widowed housewife who quickly becomes a trusted friend. Aware of Caroline’s precarious home situation, Lucinda hatches a plan to rid her friend of her loathsome husband. Soon the cashed up merry widows are leading the life they’ve always wanted until an unforeseen turn of events offers a new opportunity to start a brand new career, which may just turn out to be the best thing that’s ever happened to them.

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A novel exploring the complex, multifaceted nature of human love through three interconnecting stories of love, loss and betrayal.

Young Phoenix lives with her mother in a small rural town, enduring a childhood filled with financial insecurity and emotional instability brought on by her mother’s immature outlook and turbulent love life. Forced to frequently fend for herself Phoenix is relieved when, after a particularly disastrous romance with Danny, a young itinerant musician, her mother takes up with the older and sensible Shawn who brings order and financial stability into their lives, leaving Phoenix to concentrate on her developing relationship with her best friend Billy. However, the idyll doesn’t last long and things spiral out of control when Danny comes back to town, setting in motion a chain of events which will forever change their lives.

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 An almost biographical and definitely riotous tale of adolescence begun behind the Iron Curtain, continued in a West German refugee camp and coming to a glorious end in the land Down Under. (Illustrated)

Cabbage, Strudel & Trams tells the story of a young girl’s turbulent journey from childhood to adulthood, of adolescence begun behind the Iron Curtain, continued in a West German refugee camp and coming to a glorious end in the land Down Under. Narrated by Franta, an imaginary friend inhabiting the inner world of our young heroine Vendula, this satirical coming-of-age tale depicts the trials and tribulations of an ordinary Czech family living in a small mining town in communist Czechoslovakia in the early 1980s, their escape to West Germany and their resettlement in Australia.

The story begins when the combined household of Zhvuk & Dribbler is thrown into chaos by the untimely defection of Uncle Stan to West Germany. With nothing but their damaged political profile to lose, the family decides to eventually follow in Uncle Stan’s footsteps but not before puberty, free enterprise, unrequited love and things that only happen to other people shred our young heroine’s heart. With charm, poise and a little grace, Franta navigates Vendula through the pitfalls of her teenage years, guiding her to discover her own identity. As shenanigans gather momentum, Franta’s humorous insights into Vendula’s loopy family: the assertive mother, the henpecked father, the enterprising granddad, the blissful grandma, the dissenting uncle and his circle of “freedom fighting” friends build a picture of the life of ordinary folk surviving the oppressive communist regime.

Well, even straw will eventually break the camel’s back. Following a trip to the almighty Soviet “Onion” where rows of empty shop windows reveal the future all too clearly, the family escapes to West Germany. Unexpectedly, the refugee camp, a colourless shapeless blur on the edge of a dark, dark forest where only goblins live, is a “happy” kind of place in which tobacco chewing, nose picking, throat clearing, the occasional riot, and plentiful and uninhibited sexual exploits are the order of the day. Of course, life is not all beer and crackers for our heroes; having carved out some sort of an existence in the camp, new challenges arise when the family arrives in Australia.

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A collection of amusing short stories about the human condition revealing the absurdity of our existence.

Stories appearing in this collection are:

The English Patient, Dr Zhivago and the Purposeful Stride
The Proposal
The Imaginary Lover
The College Girl and the Older Man
What the Power of Love Looks Like on a Monday Morning
I Was Young Once
The Influential Life of Speckly Jim
The Fleeting Nature of True Friendship
How to Snag That Special Someone
The Waiting Room and the Supermarket Trolley
The Dog and the Parrot
The Long Lunch
Man of Constant Sorrow
The Remains of the Cheese
Any Man
Suffer the Little Children
The Cautionary Tale of a Young Doodler
The Tale of Desperately Boring Mike
The Tale of the Tall Lady and the Feisty Midget
The Pungent Tale of the Open-Toe Sandal
The Tale of a Worthy Albeit Slightly Flatulent Young Man
The Dilemma of the Unhappy Adventurer
Wayne. A Poem in 42 Words.

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Ivana Hruba's novels and short stories are available to download on Amazon, Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Sony, Apple and everywhere else on the net where good books are sold.

A little girl disappears. Her family is desperate to find her. Everybody wants to know. What happened?

A family attempts to rebuild their shattered lives in the aftermath of their little girl’s disappearance.

Available to download from Smashwords.

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