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( 1977 )

» View (2010)



With View (Kilátás), Marianna Brenzovincs (b. 1977), born in the sizeable ethnic Hungarian community in Sub-Carpathia—more specifically, in the southwest corner of the Ukraine bordering Hungary—has produced a work that represents a singular transition between short prose and the novel. One might say it is the novel of short prose. The elemental pleasure and élan of the narrative, of storytelling, is very much in evidence here, and yet this flow is continually interrupted by sudden reflexes and more deliberate pauses. We consequently read our way through this strong-featured family novel, this acerbic autobiography, at a dual pace. Inspired partly by her fellow Hungarian writer Endre Kukorelly, long known for his wryly playful prose, Brenzovics tends to skulk around the house of language “corrupted” to rich effect; that is to say, she expands her text by way of intentionally understylized sentences, lists presented in ostensibly dispassionate but in fact passionate terms, precision-making subtitles, and other unusual and compelling insertions. “Even I am visible while slinking over the ground, surrounded by the view, in which I carefully turn about.” Simultaneously abstract and personal, View is built of extraordinarily refreshing, unexpected twists and turns.

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