02. 11. 2015. 08:05

Best books of 2014 II.

Snapshots of Hungary twenty-five years after the regime change, and a novel about World War II. János Térey tours Budapest in narrative poems; Krisztina Tóth tells stories of missed chances; Tamás Kötter chronicles the life of the jet set in Budapest; László Szilasi visits a class reunion in Szeged after thirty years; and Pál Závada reflects on events that happened seventy years ago.

László Szilasi: The Third Bridge

One day in the life of three former classmates who are meeting at a class reunion in the southern Hungarian city of Szeged after thirty years. An émigré to Canada, a detective who had returned from Germany, and a busker who remained in Hungary. Stories of heroic deeds and weaknesses, hidden lives and lost dreams, truths and lies.

(Szilasi László: A harmadik híd, Magvető)

János Térey: Crossing Budapest

Térey’s narrative poems tour popular places as well as hidden or unfamiliar spots in Budapest, visiting powerful and powerless inhabitants of the city. Tiny gestures, quiet lies and unnoticed tragedies are revealed as the narrator walks through the city, looking into hidden rooms. Térey is intrigued by everything that is human, and everything that takes place here and now.

(Térey János: Átkelés Budapesten, Libri)

Krisztina Tóth: Superglue

Twenty-five snapshots about the twenty-five years that have passed since the regime change in Hungary. What is common about the very different characters is that they are facing decisive moments in their lives in which they procrastinate, unable to take the opportunity that is offered.

(Tóth Krisztina: Pillanatragasztó, Magvető)

Pál Závada: Natural Light

Závada's new novel takes place during and around World War II. The characters are mostly inhabitants of Békés county in south-eastern Hungary – women and men, ethnic Hungarians, Slovaks and Jews, victims and perpetrators. Seven decades have passed, and we are just beginning to come to terms with what happened in those years.

(Závada Pál: Természetes fény, Magvető)

Tamás Kötter: Vultures

The second novel of Tamás Kötter, a successful lawyer turned writer who chronicles the life of the jet set in Budapest, is about employees in a lawyer’s office. Nobody is actually doing anything, only times passes. Even the enormous amount of lies, one built on another, is unable to conceal the failure of these rich kids, suffering quietly as they sip their drinks in the trendiest bars, and book holidays to the most expensive resorts.

(Kötter Tamás: Dögkeselyűk, Kalligram)

Tags: Pál Závada, Krisztina Tóth, László Szilasi, Tamás Kötter, János Térey