I was always fascinated by the legends of Budapest – this city is my permanent muse. However traumatized and injured it is, however moody its inhabitants are these days, I love Budapest dearly, and I think it would be impossible for me to ever leave it.
After Detective Story, another short work by Kertész has been published in English. The story of a man called "the commissioner" and his wife visiting an unnamed place where enormities of an unspecified character happened some time ago, The Pathseeker is a novella of a search for traces, frustrated at every turn by life's contingencies and the impossibility of evoking what has passed.
Krúdy seems to write in a trance state, weaving webs of images that, upon reflection, astonish as evocations of the oft-forgotten Great Goddess of the Old World. Sunflower is apparently set in Hungary in the early 1900’s... plus or minus a few years/decades/centuries/millennia.
A dazzling collage of styles that evokes the tremendous heterogeneity of the contemporary cultural landscape of Central Europe, The Last Window-Giraffe is a foray into the common heritage and current aspirations shared by the people of this elusive yet ineluctable region.
György Dragomán's The White King has been recently published in English. A story of a child living in Ceausescu's Romania, the novel conveys the horrors of the adult world as they infiltrate the everyday life of a child whose father had been taken away by the secret police.
"The best thing would be if you say you got AIDS, because then you’ll automatically be granted refuge status on medical grounds. But for that you need the virus, too. Lucky for you, you went with an old pro like me. For another twenty percent I can take care of that for you, too."
Bodor’s districts are comparable to the Zone in Tarkovsky’s Stalker, although here they are reservations rather than sacred spots for purification and salvation. In these districts, the primordial aspirations of power are enacted, human solidarity takes the shape of mutual dependence and the only adequate response is flight.
Fehér’s novel contains all of the elements characteristic of Hungarian society and culture at the time of the regime change. What emerges is the often-mentioned image of a cobbled-together Hungary, complete with a motley, lurching collection of objects and people.