"Backup Life" received the Writers’ Union of Macedonia award for the best prose book of the year and was also shortlisted for the Utrinski Vesnik award for the best novel of the year.
It is an original story about two Macedonian Siamese twins joined at the head, Srebra and Zlata, and their struggle for individuality, privacy and a life of their own. The story is told by Zlata and begins in 1984, in a June suburban afternoon in Skopje, and it ends on August 18, 2012, at the exact same location. The game the characters play is the same: Fortune Telling (who’s going to marry whom, at what age, how many children will they have, what city will they live in and will their husbands be rich or poor). Later in the novel, their prophecies come true, but in a tragic fashion. In the beginning, Srebra and Zlata (the names are a play on ‘silver’ and ‘gold’, respectively) get to play the game; in the end, it belongs to Zlata’s daughters, Marta and Marija, also twins. The circle is complete, including 28 years of living, growing, suffering pain, and experiencing love and hate. There is also darkness due to death, the separation of conjoined twins, and the break-up of joint Yugoslav republics and autonomous regions. Srebra is left on the outside: the circle closes without her, for she ‘does not survive’, much like the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia after its split. Up to 1996, the action takes place in Skopje, Macedonia, and from 1996 to 2012 in Skopje and London.
"Backup Life" takes in the death of a child, the heavy burden of guilt, hatred, weddings and funerals, incest, murder, passport falsification, a poverty of the soul disguised as social poverty, faith and God, holidays and traditions, masturbation, family dysfunction to the nth degree, and acculturation. The novel is a personal, political, and historical story about the time we live in and the people we identify with.