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Throat-Rattling

Gabriele Annan: Antal Szerb, 5 June 2003

Journey by Moonlight 
by Antal Szerb, translated by Len Rix.
Pushkin, 240 pp., £6.99, November 2002, 1 901285 50 2
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... In his afterword, Len Rix, the translator of this Hungarian novel, says that its narrative ‘coincides with rising Fascism at home and abroad, and probes the national obsession with suicide’. It was first published in 1937 in Budapest, and its author died in a Nazi labour camp six years later at the age of 43 ...

That Time

Liam McIlvanney: Magda Szabó, 15 December 2005

The Door 
by Magda Szabó, translated by Len Rix.
Harvill Secker, 262 pp., £15.99, October 2005, 1 84343 193 9
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... Straightforwardly enough, The Door begins with a door. In fact, it begins with ‘The Door’, a three-page prologue – a door into the novel – in which a woman recounts a bad dream. She is standing behind the front door of her apartment building and an ambulance crew is waiting in the street. The paramedics are eager to get in – someone in the building is desperately ill – but the door won’t open ...

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