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.
There are few things as annoying as barely making the train, only to realize that it is the wrong train going in the wrong direction. For Mihály, the hero of Antal Szerb’s Journey by Moonlight, however, such nuisances are inevitable and even necessary as he progresses through his ordeal-like journey in Italy.
László Krasznahorkai is not a fashionable writer. He is marching directly against what the age is about: that literature should become part of the entertainment industry. He is failing to adapt smoothly to what is going on. This art is powerfully pitched against the intention to skim through life laughing or just sticking it out as best you can without taking any particular risk.
"It wanted to be regular and proportionate, like all trees, ideal trees; like all beings, ideal beings. But it was no dreamer. A dreamer would have been crushed by the crags. Nor was it eccentric. An eccentric would have lost patience and fled long ago."
"This is your last night, László," said the voice in the phone. It was 3 AM, on a night in early spring, 1978. I put down the phone. After a couple of minutes, it started to ring again. "You’ll be dead by the morning, László," said the voice.