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Life&Style Magazine, September 2010



Gwida Magazine, August 2005





For readers' reviews visit the Goodreads.com page by clicking here.

Dak li l-Lejl Ihallik Tghid
(what the night lets you say)

"Mejlak is the narrator par excellence, winning you over effortlessly"
Charles Flores, L-Orizzont

"Tasting the joy of writing"
Stanley Borg, The Times

"Mejlak manages to hit emotional pressure points with remarkable skill."
Teodor Reljic, MaltaToday

"Taking Maltese literature into new territories."
Mario Azzopardi

"A simple, unputdownable text that transforms the mundane into an attractive fun-fair. You willingly join the Pied Piper for the ride and enjoy every single word of it. Two thumbs up. Again."
Jacques Rene Zammit, J'Accuse

"Writing, like all art, is a craft, and there is nothing better than reading a finely crafted book. But it takes an artist to transform that craft into something more, and that is what Mejlak has achieved once more."
Alex Vella Gregory, The Sunday Times

"I feel this is Mejlak at his best. The book hit me deep down, with most of the stories striking a chord from my own life and memories. There were moments when I swore he was pulling my leg. I had to stop and reread the paragraph to see if I had missed my name somewhere."
Rupert Cefai, Gallery Pi Blog

"Another excellent collection of short stories. You have to read it. If you don’t read Maltese, hard luck, though if you don’t read Maltese even if you are Maltese, shame on you, once, twice and a thousand times."
I. M. Beck, The Times

"Darker, intense, emotion-laden work that explores the power of memories and nostalgia."
The Malta Independent

"A significant departure from his earlier work - more sombre, more reflective."
Alex Grech, Malta Inside Out

"His best, most assured and sophisticated book yet."

"Just brilliant. An excellent example of how the Maltese language can be put to great use when a writer knows what he's doing."
Antonio Olivari

"In his new book, Mejlak takes on the role of an explorer. Readers are in for a treat."
Michael Caruana, Il-Mument

"Hurry up, Pierre Mejlak, and write another one."
Francesca Balzan

Corazon Mizzi, One TV

"Fresh and forward-looking"
Joyce Grech, Education 22

"This collection of short stories takes Mejlak to the next level in his literary maturity, as the emotions explored go deeper, the characters more scarred, the locations more lived-in."
Indulge Magazine

"A delight to read. Mejlak is definitely a notable among the modern breed of Maltese writers who have put to rest the ghost of stilted and unimaginative narration that used to plague what seemed to be like the majority of Maltese literature until fairly recently."
Colin Fitz, First Magazine

"How on earth did Pierre J. Mejlak manage to not only get us to read but also to - shock, horror - read books in Maltese?!"
Ramona Depares, The Times

"The work of a maturing voice"
Peter Farrugia, The Sunday Times

"Mejlak's writing shows the short story genre at its best and puts paid to the myth that a short story cannot have a strong plot and character exploration. Mejlak confirms his reputation as an author with a penetrating eye into the psyche and soul of fellow human beings, and does not shy away from exploring the darker side of human nature."

Qed Nistenniek Niezla max-Xita
(I'm waiting for you to fall with the rain)

"I have honestly not been this excited by young Maltese writers since way back in the 1970s. Malta's ever-growing cosmopolitan nature comes out like a laser beam, seeking, finding and transfixing you. Mejlak is a keen observer and a great collector of people's hearts and moods. This book will go a long way towards confirming Mejlak as one of Malta's top young writers. His uncluttered style and a penchant for the straightforward give him the edge in present-day Maltese Literature that is struggling albeit successfully, to claim tomorrow as a reality and not a myth."
Charles Flores, The Times

"Shades of Fellini!"
Conrad Thake, The Architect

"It’s not easy to describe Mejlak's latest book. This is a book about being European, about being young and inquisitive; but it's also a book about the Maltese roots that stay with us throughout our lives, making us look back at the idiosyncracies of living in a tiny island with attendant island mentality. With Qed Nistenniek Niezla max-Xita (i'm waiting for you to fall with the rain) Mejlak has grown into an artist of the written word, with a command of the modern Maltese idiom that is difficult to match."
Manic Magazine

"Pierre J. Mejlak really comes into his own as an astute narrator. As a child of the 80s, he describes what it was like growing up in a very political active household. He speaks of the political tension of the time in the matter-of-fact tone of someone who had come to see violence and thuggish behaviour as a way of life."
Josanne Cassar (The Independent on Sunday)

"Short stories are not a genre that I go for, generally, but I found myself moving from one to the other at quite a clip, probably because the language and the style were such as to engage me very strongly. One of the stories actually moved me to, well, if not tears, very damp eyes. This was good stuff."
I. M. Beck (The Times)

"Mejlak paints pictures with unusual colours and brushstrokes, without explaining, because it is the story and characters which paint themselves."
Maria Grech Ganado

"I had to read this book twice, some parts even three times, not because it is difficult to understand, but because it is addictively beautiful."
Alex Vella Gregory, The Sunday Times

Claire Bonello

"His many characters come to life very much like figures in a painting."
Life&Style Magazine

"He has gone from a promising children's writer to a loved and respected author, finding his place among the upcoming Maltese writers of our generation. His work is gentle, evocative, sensitive, and displays a curiosity about people, their lives, their eccentricities, their meetings which might or might not change their lives."
Sandra Aquilina, Sunday Circle

"Vibrant and forward-looking."
The Times

"Seeing a popular jazz club jampacked with people for the launch of a book in Maltese, says a lot about how eagerly awaited Mejlak's latest book was."
Joe Cassar, Il-Mument

"Extraordinary! Read it!"
Claire Agius, TVM

"Mejlak's voice ranges from the melancholic to the comic, from the political to the personal - but always heartfelt and intimate."
Sandra Aquilina, LetsGozo

"This book marks an important development in Maltese Literature, quite simply because Maltese is being used to describe the outside world first hand in the most natural way. The resulting collection of stories is a breath of fresh air. This is poetic pop literature, refreshingly unburdended by guilt or complexes."
David Friggieri, MaltaToday

"Like his previous work, a compulsive page turner."
Sergio Grech, Radju Malta

"A splendid collection of emotions."
Ramona Portelli, KullHadd

"It's a pity it took me so long to discover this gem of a book. Incredibly beautiful."
Minister George Pullicino, The Times

"Mejlak - probably the best writer of his generation - is at his best."
Gwida Magazine

"Simply put, beautiful."
Michael Caruana, In-Nazzjon

"As the Maltese proverb goes, the early morning sun bodes well for the entire day. Mejlak takes us a stride further in the maturation of his writing. This book confirms Mejlak as a natural born writer, whilst marking him as an important exponent of New Maltese Literature."
Mark Vella

"Written as finely and as carefully as Gozitan lace."
Jacques Rene Zammit, J'Accuse

"Mejlak casts a penetrating eye at life from the various vantage points of eternal love, pure sex, petty politics and friendship, all of which are soaked in rain, hence the title, and bereft of the peace of mind one is hopelessly looking for."
The Weekender

"A breath of fresh air."
Charles Xuereb, Campus FM

"A compelling and moving collection of short stories from one of Malta's most exciting and successful authors presents colourful snapshots of lives in progress. Whether it is life in a small Maltese village, a noisy cosmopolitan existence or a life spent searching for identity, excitement or simply companionship, Mejlak's exquisite prose draws the reader in and allows them to experience the world of his creation. In this collection, the art of the short story finds its perfect expression."
Indulge Magazine

"Writing in his mother tongue is this young author's greatest inspiration."
Sky Life

Rih Isfel
(Southern Wind)

"A breath of fresh air in a hot and humid summer. Mejlak is at his best, depicting the difficulties of being 15 or 16 in a village that is at least 500 years old, and has not changed much in the meantime. I do not, by any stretch, fall into the age bracket that this book is aimed at. Yet I am not ashamed to say that I enjoyed reading it more than I enjoyed reading works of fiction in Maltese meant for more adult readers. It may well be that I have not yet grown up, but I suppose it is also because finally young adult fiction has come of age. This is a book for young people who want to be treated like grown ups, for grown ups who want to feel young, and for anyone who likes a good story well told. Whatever age you are, buy this book and read it. If your parents are still responsible for what you read, do not tell them about it."
Dr Marco Galea, The Times of Malta

"Mejlak writes in a simple, lucid style reminiscent of Mark Haddon. Like Haddon's The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, Rih Isfel belongs to the cross-over genre appealing to teenagers and adults alike. I'd recommend Rih Isfel to anyone wanting to exorcise the mind-numbing Maltese study texts of past school days. Actually I'd recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good read."
Dr Claire Bonello, Malta Today

"I'd wholeheartedly recommend Rih Isfel to anyone who can read Maltese. If for no other reason, just because it is a rare offering: a highly original, carefully thought out piece of writing in the Maltese language. I'm mighty glad I found the time to read it."
Dr Toni Sant, Toni Sant's Blog

"Rih Isfel strikes one as innovative both in its narrative technique as in the issues and themes it evokes. The story presents itself as a psychological novel with a Maltese village, endowed with a mythical and universal significance, as its setting."
Bernadette Pace Falzon, Il Tolomeo

"I read Rih Isfel with a feeling of relaxed contentment that could only be had by the pleasure of a revival of multiple memories and familiar landscapes safely entwined within a fertile vocabulary that immediately brings the reader close to home."
Jacques Rene Zammit, J'Accuse

Pierre J. Mejlak's Blog

"Not one to rest on his laurels, Pierre J. Mejlak emerges from the success of his translation of a children's encyclopedia in Maltese to continue delighting readers with his blog from Brussels. Pierre's blog recently shifted to bilingual mode, to the delight of all readers keen to find good writings in Maltese on the internet. As aboutmalta.com's managing editor, he brings insights from and about Malta from the perspective of someone equally in touch with the latest trends and age-old traditions."
Dr Toni Sant

"Mejlak writes in splendid Maltese and his work proves wrong all those who think that Maltese is only good for saying hello, cheers and goodbye."
Sergio Grech

"I think Pierre Mejlak has got the potential to become one of the most important Maltese writers of this generation."
Guze' Stagno

"Having worked with Pierre Mejlak for quite a few years now, I have been thrilled to follow his coming of age as a writer. His affair with Brussels seems to have imbued his writing with a smoke-and-streetlights atmosphere (sans murderers and pimps... so far); one assumes his next character will be a mix of Bogart in Casablanca and McGregor in Moulin Rouge keying away at his rusty typewriter, and his blogposts are a publishing editor's dream of a works-in-progress. Blending rural Gozo and cosmopolitan Brussels can be tricky, but in Mejlak's case is working."
Dr Chris Gruppetta, Merlin Library

Enciklopedija ghat-Tfal
(children's encyclopedia)

"A feast of knowledge thirsting to come out from the pages. I must confess that I ended up reading the book page by page, as if I were reading a novel. Reading a book like this in your own language fills you with pride."
Sergio Grech, In-Nazzjon

"Published a mere month ago, with no launches or fanfare, Merlin Library's latest Maltese publication - Enciklopedija ghat-Tfal - has become a massive word-of-mouth success, smashing first-month sales records for non-fiction in Maltese."

"It's a runaway bestseller, exceeding all expectations."
The Times of Malta

Stejjer mill-Bibbja
(Bible Stories)

"Pierre J. Mejlak's work was not only that of a translator (although this alone is already a daunting task), but he also took care to adapt, simplify and give an authentic Maltese feel to the entire work."
Trevor Zahra

"If you only buy one book this year, make sure this is it!"
Tanja Cilia, The Sunday Times

Meta Nstabu l-Angli
(when the angels were found)

"The writing, the story, the illustrations, as well as a high-quality professional presentation by Merlin Library's production team, have all resulted in a superb package, one which will surely make Meta Nstabu l-Angli a milestone in Maltese children's literature of the 21st century."
Norbert Ellul Vincenti, The Sunday Times

Trab Abjad
(white dust)

"As I started reading the first few pages, I suddenly and completely forgot that I was reading the work of a 14-year-old boy. I was immediately struck by the details of the plot, conceived with the greatest accuracy, the very authentic setting and atmosphere of the tale, the light and sprightly rhythm from one chapter to the next… and above all, the truly splendid use of Maltese!"
Trevor Zahra

"The book is a solid adventure, well-endowed with all the elements staple to that and related sub-genres within juvenile literature. The very nature of the lack of complication, and his good use of simple (and at times quaint and endearing) language, will probably make this book a firm favourite in the 7-12 age bracket. And I do not blame them, because at that age I would have devoured it and probably reread it a dozen times myself. It is fun, very readable and will probably be consumed by its young readers in one sitting. It is as gripping as any Blyton books, which, given the millions of copies sold by that author, says a lot. Mejlak handles Maltese well. He has a natural flair for writing that will eventually bear plots that are much more complex and characters more rounded than in his debut. And he will handle them with ease, because the indications are already there. Time will hone skills he already has in abundance and possibly turn him into a very accomplished writer. His first book is a very competent effort that will definitely do what it has set out to do. Make children read it and ask for more."
Dr Gorg Mallia, The Times of Malta


              ©2006 Pierre J Mejlak. Site by: briangrech