Born in Tomislavgrad 1977, he has funneled all his experience as a journalist into novels with its brilliant, razor-sharp prose. He began working at the Slobodna Dalmacija newspapers when he was only sixteen, going on to work at the Feral Tribune, Novi List and now as the editor in chief of the weekly magazine Novosti, in addition to authoring and co-authoring biographies on both former Croatian president Stipe Mesić, former general Ante Gotovina and the Turkish millionaire Şarik Tara. Everything he writes is based on real cases and real people, but as the opening lines of his second novel I Dreamed of Elephants expresses, “In truth, I say to you, it is better to be a novelist, a fiction writer, a liar.” His novels Cirkus Columbia and I Dreamed of Elephants have been translated into German, Italian, Spanish and Hungarian. For Cirkus Columbia (2003) he received the prestigious book award Meša Selimović for the best fiction book in Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro. Academy Award winner Danis Tanović directed the movie Cirkus Columbia (2010) with Đikić as a co-screenwriter. The novel Cirkus Columbia has been translated into Italian and Spanish and it is also published in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia. In 2007 Đikić published his second fiction book Ništa sljezove boje (Mallow colour of Nothing) which consists of three separate stories. The main subject of these stories is again war with its direct and indirect consequences and set-backs. In 2011 he published the novel I Dreamed of Elephants (Sanjao sam slonove) for which he received the prestigious T-portal literary award. His novel Repetition. A love story (Ponavljanje. Ljubavna priča, 2014) is more focused on the intimate relations and shows us that Đikić is as good in that area as in contouring the global panel. In 2016 Đikić published his fourth novel – the documentary novel Srebrenica. A Story of Evil, which describes the events during three horror days of the genocide in Bosnia. His latest novel Apparition (2018) is a political dystopia about democracy and its weaknesses.
Đikić is the author and screenwriter of the acclaimed TV show The Paper (2016-2018), directed by Dalibor Matanić and produced by Drugi plan/HRT. The Paper reached worldwide reception by coming to Netflix, the largest global media services provider.
In a godforsaken part of an unnamed country, near an unimportant village known only for its saffron production more than twenty-five years ago, suddenly and without an apparent motive, domestic and wild animals started to climb the hill G. and peacefully look at the sky. Electric fence is soon put up around the hill by the church authorities, along with other devices set to keep the animals away, and the miracle, like the nearby Marian apparition, remains forgotten until the suicide of reverend Leopold Hort. We learn about these events, their background and another suicide during the first apparition, in the last word at the trial against Albert Koc.
Feral Tribune, 2003, 110 pages
complete translation available in Spanish and Italian
Translation rights sold: Italy (Bottega Errante), Spain (Sajalin Editores), Bosnia and Herzegovina (Civitas), Serbia (with other stories, Red Box)
A political and romantic saga that covers the end of a century which tragically announced the beginning of a new era in the Balkans. Written is prose typical of the best of Bosnian writers – as the Nobel prize winning author Ivo Andrić – in its method of storytelling, in its creation and development of character, its consistent plot and specific sense of calm when presenting even the most disturbing content.
A crime novel but also a great literary and social study of traumatic times in Croatia and its characters. A revealing story about the pathological affinities between the secret services and politics that have the elusive appeal of organized crime: typical social-pathological phenomena.
Mallow Colour of Nothing is a collection of three stories (Green Castle; Please, Try and Sleep; As Nothing Ever Happened), in part relying on the Đikić’s novel regarding a subject that is once more, but not always directly, connected to the war; the narrative style here is focused on changes of narrative division, time perspectives and certain inherited traditions of oral Bosnian storytelling.
Naklada Ljevak, 2014, 136 pages
20-page excerpt available in English
Set in one winter night, beginning with the arrival of a more or less unexpected passenger and ending with one of the most poetic scenes in contemporary Croatian literature, Repetition has the discursive traces of a love story, a detective story and an elegy of the victim’s character but it cannot be classified in any of the aforementioned categories; it has a story on its own.
Naklada Ljevak, April 2016, 246 pages
60-pages excerpt available in English
Translation rights sold: Norway (Solum|Bokvennen), Italy (Bottega Errante), Sweden (Ramus), Czech Republic (Albatros)
Outstanding and unflinching documentary novel that follows the events that took place in the course of the three days and nights (between 13 and 16 July 1995) during which almost eight thousand Bosniaks were killed in the area of Srebrenica. The intention of this non-fiction novel is to research and to understand, using literary means, how was it possible for a JNA officer, raised in the spirit of Yugoslavia and genuinely devoted to the Yugoslav ideal and Titoism, to take charge of the operation to kill eight thousand people based exclusively on their ethnicity and religion.
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