Ervin Lázár is the creator of a genre we may safely call
Central European folk surrealism, which takes on the quality of a
hallucinatory exploration into that part of the soul where beauty, hope,
and yearning live in close proximity with the harsh realities of life.
It may well be that (some) Hungarian critics regard Budapest Noir the first truly “noir” Hungarian thriller, but I wouldn’t go quite that
far. It is not a James Ellroy, more something in the older mould:
Maigret, say, or Perry Mason, at most a Philip Marlowe, say, but none
the worse for that.
György Spiró’s new novel Captivity (Fogság), the Hungarian literary sensation of the year, is a reconstruction of the period from around the death of Christ until the Jewish War. Uri, the protagonist of the novel, is selected to be a member of the delegation that takes the Pesach tax of Roman Jews to Jerusalem. Through his adventures we get an extremely lively picture of contemporary Rome, Jerusalem and Alexandria. – An interview with the author by Erika Csontos.
One of the Hungarian literary sensations of the last decade, Jadviga's Pillow (1997) was an oddity in Hungary, being both a critical and a public success. The novel, portraying life in a Slovak village in Hungary between the two world wars, was recently published in German under the title Das Kissen der Jadviga.