At Host, one of the largest independent publishing houses in the Czech Republic, we have focused on contemporary Czech and world writing for almost thirty years. The Host brand has become a guarantee of high-quality literature in many genres. We are renowned for the care we take with our editing and the excellence of our graphic design. Our primary aim is to find the right readers for the outstanding books we offer. We take pains to provide ongoing care for our books and their authors after publication.
We currently publish about 180 titles annually, in genres including the following: general fiction, SF and fantasy, crime fiction, the thriller, children’s literature, popular science, specialist literature, poetry.
Host is proud to publish many leading Czech authors. Their popularity with readers and the wealth of literary awards to come their way confirm us in our belief that painstaking care for a book – from manuscript stage through to the last detail – makes perfect sense. Our authors include Alena Mornštajnová and Kateřina Tučková, whose bestselling works account for hundreds of thousands of copies and have been translated into many languages. Our Czech literature programme comprises all the genres mentioned above.
Our literature in translation programme, too, has a great deal to offer. The various stories we take from all over the world are characterized by readability, literary excellence and – last but not least – careful translation. Thanks to us, Czech readers are acquainted with works by authors including Olga Tokarczuk, Fredrik Backman, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Bernardine Evaristo, Nino Haratischwili and Muriel Barbery.
Our crime fiction programme is an integral part of what we do. In their chosen setting of criminal investigation, our authors respond to topical issues – a matter of great importance to us. We regard the publication of the first part of Stieg Larsson’s Millennium series as a significant moment in our history, for it was this that launched the Nordic noir phenomenon on the Czech market. Our best-performing authors in this genre currently include Lars Kepler, Jussi Adler-Olsen and Peter May.
In recent years we have strengthened our list by adding SF and fantasy, young adult fiction and children’s literature programmes. As we have no fear of the unexplored, we delight in introducing new trends to the Czech market. The most interesting names on our SF-in-translation list include N. K. Jemisin, Ted Chiang, Anthony Ryan and Liu Cixin; our Czech SF authors, notably Pavel Bareš and Petra Stehlíková, have also performed very well. As for children’s literature, our titles include works by successful authors Aleksandra Mizielińska and Daniel Mizieliński, Marianne Dubuc, Emilia Dziubak, Oksana Bula, and Roberto Santiago. Another focus of ours is the high-quality Czech book for children, by which we bring together an original story with great artwork.
In terms of society, politics and art, the world is changing in all kinds of ways. Fortunately, we will always have books to capture this change. Some of these you will find on our nonfiction list. In the Klimax series, Host publishes original works on issues of climate change, including Rachel Carson’s classic Silent Spring. Our list also contains big names of contemporary nonfiction, notably Masha Gessen, Florian Illies and Sarah Bakewell. The Czech book Slepé skvrny [Blind Spots] by Daniel Prokop has become a national bestseller.
The history of Host is associated with the literary review of the same name, which first appeared in 1985 as a samizdat anthology. The Host book-publishing house was established in the 1990s for poetry and literary theory, genres to which it remains true. Works of structuralism studies appear in the Strukturalistická knihovna [Structuralism Library] series, while other literary theory is published in the Teoretická knihovna [Theory Library] series. Since the Nineties, the publishing house has been owned by Miroslav Balaštík, Tomáš Reichel and Martin Stöhr.
You can view our books and meet our authors and team at regular events, including author’s readings, panel discussions and book fairs. We take part every year in the international book fairs in Frankfurt, London, Bologna and, of course, Prague, as well as fairs in other parts of the Czech Republic.