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.
An accurate enough version of a contemporary, disillusioned Hungarian zeitgeist, this novel is an uncompromising rebellion against consumerism, bourgeois values, and ultimately, all the banalities of social norms and interpersonal Catch-22’s.
"I wanted to know who, why and how was involved in ruining the first half of my life." - Poet Zsófia Balla moved from Romania to Hungary shortly after the regime change in 1989. We asked her about her decision to request the surveillance file by the Romanian Secret Service (the Securitate) targeting her during communism.
"Not that I have any knowledge of what evil is, not at all, / I haven’t a clue about the way the oak leaves are stuck in its flesh, / the way rough strings are looped around its hind legs and it is hung / on the rotten roof-beam of the shed dug deep in the ground, / it could be the corpse of a dog, a rabbit, or a fox, I can’t tell"
Oh, those late harvests! There were three starts to the school year: the first time at the beginning of September but a few days later the whole school would be working on the vintage, then it would be lessons again, but then at the end of October we would pick the late-ripened Aszú grapes, and afterwards, sadly, it would be school again.