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.
Fulfilled love, lessened by yearning for a home country swept away by history. Andrea Tompa's new book is a novel of historical traumas, assimilation, as well a novel about the city of Cluj before and after the First World War.
In this latest addition to the series of interviews on our sister website Litera, Tim Wilkinson looks back on his career as a literary translator while also discussing his personal dreams and revealing which works have offered the greatest challenges, yet still proved to be the most rewarding.
Ervin Lázár has recently celebrated his 70th birthday. Although he is best known as the author of wonderful children’s books, his Csillagmajor (The Little Town of Miracles), fifteen short tales based on the author’s experiences as a child growing up in a Hungarian village, is written for adults.
Now they had been released, and they were impudently happy, being on the
point of shouting ‘Long live the Tsar!’ or ‘Long live the First
Secretary!’ (or the Regent, or the chief shaman of the Hungarians), but
fortunately for them they did not shout any of these things—they
instinctively had more taste. Not to mention the four harsh years of
their jail sentences, though admittedly those had ended.