In The Eagle’s Talons

Original title: S orlem na zádech
Publisher: Euromedia Group, Prague, 2022
288 pages
Modern Fiction

A novel about a case of modern slavery, with a focus on socially disadvantaged women. The author vividly portraits these women and offers a deep insight into their life stories and their minds.

Do you know which rabbit can fly? The one that is held in the talons of an eagle. And do you know who rescues socially disadvantaged people from despair, need and drug addiction? Who offers them a roof over their heads and everything they need in life? A modern slaveholder. The novel deals with one of these criminal cases, which unfolded in London a few years ago, but could happen anytime anywhere: Clever entrepreneurs select their victims from among socially disadvantaged compatriots, house them, find jobs for them—and confiscate their wages. Many of the victims don’t even want to admit that something is wrong. As modern slaves they have a regular routine, permanent accommodation and three meals a day.

People like this, especially the women among them, are the main characters of the novel In The Eagle’s Talons. Nikola, Olina, Jolana, Alena—all these women share a similar fate: there is no place for them in society; they are traumatised, destitute, uneducated and allow others to exploit and abuse them throughout their lives. They’ve never known anything different. So they are easy prey for the slaveholder, who takes them to London from abroad. Finally they all end up in the same house, where they live until the police lock the slaveholder up.

Readers get to know these women up close and become familiar with their life stories. Even more: they learn to see the world from the point of view of these women—a truly unusual perspective. These are women who, to most people, are not worth a second glance. Women whose lives have become case files in social welfare offices. Women who cannot be helped because they were deprived of chances from the start.

Iva Pekárková, who works as an interpreter for courts and social services in London, has got to know countless life stories of people on the fringes. In this novel, they own the stage.

I would recommend In The Eagle’s Talons to thriller lovers, social novel lovers and all those who like powerful stories. Stylistically, the novel is similar to the work of J.P. Delaney.
Nikol Horáková
Extraordinarily powerful stories of modern slaveholders and their victims
Vltava radio

Other books by Iva Pekárková

Modern Fiction
Modern Fiction
Modern Fiction
Modern Fiction
Modern Fiction
Modern Fiction