Reading Kutsenko’s short stories, you think of Chekhov, Pantheleimon Romanov and Shukshin. The latter comes to your mind because of themes of the short stories and their characters: strange people, oddballs and cranks, who are a bit more suited to reality. Maybe some of them will remind us of ourselves, as
there are situations on life where we can be pretty odd. Colonel, who got rid of kidney stones with the same resoluteness he had when getting rid of his seven wives.
Malika, a girl from aul, who was bartered for an old car by her old groom. Scandinavian dances, when a well-meant character tries to commit a sin and what he only succeeds in is
getting drunk (so Russian-like!). Snowstorm, blowingfromamomma’sboyallhisphonyfirmness. Apple Tree – a lyric short storyabout an old gardener, caring about a small apple tree like it was a baby of a beloved.
Jealousy – a short story about Russian “extreme foolishness” that was sang about by Alexander Bashlachev in his rockballads. Check-up – showingmismatchesbetweenrealityandco
py-bookmaxims. Flight – about fears, real and false, accompanying us in our lives. All these are not only events, but also a reason to look at yourself and ask – am I living my own life and living it right? Maybe I need to change while it is not too late…