When renowned film director Péter Gárdos wrote the story, he intended it as a film script, but eventually he made it into a novel. “Fever at Dawn,” the love story of two Holocaust survivors―the author’s parents―has ever since sold in more than 20 territories.
It would be very hard to find anything more absurd and nonsensical than the Hungarian army of the Socialist era. Face and About-Face recounts the unique experience of the one-year compulsory army service that young men who had been admitted to college or university had to complete before starting their studies.
"Curiosity in my view is a moral virtue, a curious person is a better person than those who are not curious." – Dóra Szekeres talked to Amos Oz, the Guest of Honour of this year's Budapest Book Festival.
Serious face, he rarely smiles. Supposedly too little, but rarity of smiling as compared with what? He picks up from the table a bilious-green goblet and crushes it. The blood flows onto the tablecloth. He squeezes it with an even force until the glass smashes. As in a stagey film, though in those they would use paint, whereas this is real blood, though one would have to admit this too is a fairly stagey scene.
Márai is easy to translate. What I mean to say is that he gives himself to you and invites you to enjoy the clear rhetorical circling of his prose as he uncovers layer after layer of motivation. He is all burning curiosity tempered by patience.