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Antal Szerb Ý 9 charactersThe first time I ve heard about Antal Szerb was no than two months ago Since then I managed to put my hands onto all the novels by Szerb translated into English whose number euals to threeI had the luck to make a good catch while visiting an Oxfam charity shop in lovely Bath UK Bless the kind Sculpting Making a Toddler Doll reader who donated Szerb s novels to Oxfam Journey by Moonlight Utas s holdvil g published in 1937 is widely considered as Szerb s masterpiece but I must confess that I liked The Pendragon Legend his first novel a hint Nevertheless this novel came very close to the intellectual pleasure I felt whileeading Szerb s previous work and is considered a milestone of Hungarian literatureAntal Szerb had the Soldados del Multiverso: Guerreros del pasado (Guerras del Multiverso n 2) rare talent to combine serious and farcical elements into his novels What we have into this one is a post wedding personality crisis of a Hungarian man Mihaly who is still tied to his adolescence prone to womanising and cannoteally cope with the social and moral On Disgust responsabilities brought by adulthoodFrom the very first sentence of the book we know that something odd is going to happen to Mihaly He s travelling through Italy on honeymoon with his newly wed wife Erszi a pretty butather boring socialite whom he took away from her previous wealthy husband out of an extramarital fling Unlike his wife it s the first time that Mihaly visits Italy and he s deeply fascinated by the country due to its glorious past A Dirty Wedding Night: A Dirty Rockstar Romance Collection (Dirty, Book 2.5) rather than because of what he sees around him To Mihaly Italy means first and foremost Goethe the Renaissance and the Ancient Romans deeds in a dramatic and sentimental manner that brought to my mind Peter Camenzind by Herman Hesse But whereas Hesseeally meant what he wrote writing his idyllic postcards from a non existent Italy with an involuntary comic effect Szerb is able to cast some clever observations on Italy in the 1930s between the lines thus stressing out the absurdity of Mihaly s behaviour in being tied to a Grand Tour shaped pastArt food sensual pleasures and architecture aside what Mihaly eally pines for is wondering and wandering around the alleyways of Venice the hills of Tuscany and the forests of
preferably by night and a state of self indulged introspective stupor which leads him to take impulsive and absurd decisionsErszi is ather tolerant of her husband s Faja (Naslouchač, recurring oddities but all the same she doesn t care a bit to catch him when Mihaly unaware and aware at the same time leaves her behind by boarding a wrong train From this point on Szerb focuses on Mihaly s identity crisis and the interesting people and the former acuaintances he meets through his Italian adventure Some of these encounters happen by chance some others not but all leave a mark in Mihaly s tormented story The author shows us a man whoebelled against a petty bourgeois life but poor Mihaly doesn t uite know what led him to ebel and what he s inclined to pursuit and how By writing so Szerb tells us about the protagonist s personal defeat and evokes the topic of suicide which is a taboo much dear to his fellow HungariansAnd yet don t look at Journey by Moonlight as your dark and depressing novel spiralling downwards to the abyss of human nihilism as Szerb s peculiarity and ability is that he always knew how to cheer you up with a touch of lightness Go and ead yourselves To step off The train The bus The world The marriage Surely you ve thought of itThis is Europe before World War II But that s not essential to the story Mussolini is mentioned but he has no moment It is not that kind of allegoryIt is Mih ly who steps off stepping off the train during his honeymoon in Italy He leaves his new bride Erzsi on the stepping off the train during his honeymoon in Italy He leaves his new bride Erzsi on the It seems an accident when Mih ly steps off but it is no accident There was a group A major classic of 1930s literature Antal Szerb's Journey by Moonlight Utas és Holdvilág is the fantastically moving and darkly funny story of a bourgeois businessman torn between duty and desire'On the train everything seemed fine The trouble began in Venice 'Mihály has dreamt of Italy all his life When he finally travels there on his honeymoon with wife Erszi he soon abandon her in order to find himself haunted by old friends from his turbulent teenage days beau. .Umbria Preferably By Night And
F friends in Mih ly s impressionable years Of his friends and they all play a part in the story it is va he is chasing But to keep the story going he does not know thatChasing va Chasing Amy Silent Bob So there s me and Amy and we Dirty Work re all inseparableight Just big time in love And then four months down the oad the idiot gear kicks in and I ask about the ex boyfriend Which four months down the oad the idiot gear kicks in and I ask about the ex boyfriend Which we all know is a The Mount Shasta Mission really dumb move But you know how it is you don t wanna know but you just have toight Stupid guy bullshit So anyway she starts telling me about him how they fell in love and how they went out for a couple of years and how they lived together her mother likes me better blah blah blah blah blah and I m okay But then she drops the bomb on me and the bomb is this it seems that a couple of times while they were going out he brought some people to bed with them M nage trois I
it s called this just blows my mind Little Darlings right I mean I am not used to this sort of thing I mean I wasaised Catholic for God s sakeJay Saint ShitheadSilent Bob So I m totally weirded out by this Greenwich right And then I just start blasting her Like I don t know how to deal with what I m feeling so I figure the best way is by calling her a slutight And tell her she was used I m I m out for blood I eally wanna hurt this girl I m like What the fuck is your problem ight And she s just all calmly trying to tell me like it was that time and it was that place and she doesn t think she should apologize because she doesn t feel that she s done anything wrong I m like Oh Your Name Here really That s when I look her straight in the eye I tell her it s over I walkJay Fuckin ASilent Bob No idiot It was a mistake I didn t hate her I wasn t disgusted with her I was afraid At that moment I felt small like like I d lacked experience like I d never be on her level like I d never be enough for her or something like that you know what I m saying But what I did not get she didn t care She wasn t looking for that guy any She was she was looking for me for the Bob But uh by the time I figure this all out it was too late man She moved on and all I had to show for it was some foolish pride which then gave way toegret She was the girl I know that now But I pushed her away So I ve spent every day since then chasing Amy so to speak I dropped in Silent Bob not to be glib or in any way a dimunition of this book It just came up maybe obviously I didn t see the differenceApparently in pre WWII Italy suicide was something of a sport People step off a lot in this bookI have not stepped off If I have Mate Me [If You May] (The Millennium Wolves, regrets it is not stepping onI would beemiss in not mentioning that Szerb does a very nice job of channeling different nationalities None better than when he introduces us to Millicent the American student Skewers us he does This is the sort of book I loveone that you come across somewhere in this case a castle library in Italy and feel sure that it was hiding there all this time waiting for you to find it The author is Hungarian and the novel was originally published in 1937 its English translation appeared in 2000 Journey by Moonlight is unlike any novel I ve True read the atmosphere is both dreamy descriptiveich in history and detail The characters are interesting and the dialogue is excellent It s insightful among other things about love and A Fairly Honourable Defeat relationships life and death Mihaly is passive and moody and abandons his wife on their honeymoon on the train in Umbria Over time heeconnects with members of his close circle of friends from his schooldays in Budapest now scattered and having taken up very different lives in Umbria and Rome The novel Also Follows Mihaly S Wife And Her Point Of View follows Mihaly s wife and her point of view sections she takes up a new life in Paris Fucking Trans Women rather thaneturning to Budapest and ther. Tiful kind Tamas brash and wicked Janos and the sexless yet unforgettable Eva Journeying from Venice to Ravenna Florence and Rome Mihály loses himself in Venetian back alleys and in the Tuscan and Umbrian countryside driven by an irresistible desire to Slavery Reborn resurrect his lost youth among Hungary's Bright Young Things and knowing that he must soon decide whether toeturn to the ambiguous promise of a placid adult life or allow himself to be seduced into a life of scandal.Believe It S Called
E is a very funny letter from her first husband to Mihaly early on in the novel I forgot to mention that the novel is uite funny dryly so in places A ich novel one that is idiosyncratic and mysterious unclassifiable the best sort First of all let me tell you as a Hungarian who ead the novel both in Hungarian and in English that the translation is simply brilliant Len Rix did full credit to the original text and Antal Szerb s genius So praising the translation to the skies was th The basic theme is an adult man he s 36 in love with nostalgia for his youth He was of a lower class background but hung out with a group of four or five friends in a wealthy neighborhood of Budapest Castle Hill The time is between World Wars They spend all their time play acting years to the point where that became the whole purpose of their lives Those friends drinking and smoking with no adult supervision became so dedicated to each other they became their own family Even as adults they are still seeking each other out and carrying the burden of those they lost such as one who committed suicide The play acting leads him to believe that dying is an erotic act and that death is the great ecstasy I m eminded of another Hungarian author s novel Sandor Marai s The Rebels which would m eminded of another Hungarian author s novel Sandor Marai s The Rebels which would been written about the same time in Budapest and where I thought the play acting and dressing out of the four boys in that story was simply over the top but perhaps that was a fad at the time in Budapest Marai
S Was Published Inwas published in Szerb s in 1937 He s on his honeymoon but he basically has what we might call a nervous breakdown He leaves his wife and wanders the countryside He meets several of these old friends some of his wife and wanders the countryside He meets several of these old friends some of are searching for himOne man from the old group has become a celebrated monk in the monastery at Gubbio Another seeks the main character out He s kind of a hustler and gets involved with the main character s abandoned wife and he is in contact with his family trying to find him back in Budapest and maybe get some money out of the deal The woman of the group and the main character may not ealize it but perhaps he has always been in love with her lives in Italy but hides from him and Its a Lat Lat Lat Lat World refuses to see him He gets involved with a young America woman He had won her complete confidence By evening he had gleaned everything there was to know about her not that there was anything worth knowing I know what s wrong with me he told the doctor Acute nostalgia I want to be young again Is there a cure for that The people the vegetative sea of the Italian masses bore the changing times on their back with astonishing passivity and lived uite unconnected with their ownemarkable history He suspected that even Republican and Imperial Rome with its huge gestures its heroics and bestial stupidities had been nothing than a virile drama on the surface the whole Roman Empire the mere private affair of a few brilliant actors while down below the Italians placidly ate their pasta sang songs of love and begat their countless offspring I enjoyed the travelogue part too where he describes each town he visited On the map I ve included these towns which were mainly in Umbria north of Rome south of Tuscany Ravenna Arezzo Siena Cortona Perugia Gubbio Assissi Spello Foligno Spoleto and Norcia This Hungarian author wrote about a dozen novels He was born to secular Jewish parents and The Infinite Air raised as a Catholic but that did not save him from death in the concentration camps A terrible loss to literature This was a goodead I ll call it a 45 The Spill rounded up to 5 Note that this book has a very highating on GR 43 Castle Hill Budapest from ipinimgcomoriginalsMap of Umbria from ipinimgcomoriginalsHugarian stamp honoring the author from colnectcomenstamps. Ous adventure Journey by Moonlight Utas és Holdvilág is an undoubted masterpiece of Modernist literature a darkly comic novel cut through by sex and death which traces the effects of a socially and sexually claustrophobic world on the life of one manTranslated from the Hungarian by the Pandoras Planet renowned and award winning Len Rix Antal Szerb's Journey by Moonlight first published as Utas és Holdvilág in Hungary in 1937 is the consummate European novel of the inter war peri.