Set mostly in contemporary Cairo and Iraq, as well as Israel, London, and Hungary, these twelve short stories are a staggering follow-up to those in the acclaimed collection The Devil Is a Black Dog by leading Hungarian writer/photojournalist Sándor Jászberényi. Told from the perspective of Cairo-based European war correspondent Daniel Marosh, The Most Beautiful Night of the Soul is, above all, about a journalist examining some of today’s most pressing Middle East conflicts and the lives of others even while forced to question his own assumptions and haunted by his own demons.
A unique, insider’s view of the days, and disquieting nights, of one Middle East war correspondent who seeks the truth even while battling his own demons.
Resonates with the work of Tim O’Brien, Kevin Powers, Ernest Hemingway, and Graham Greene—when journalism and an insider's view becomes literature in capital letters The author's own personal story⎯his unresolved relationships with his own father and with the mother of his child⎯provides a compelling emotional backdrop. Spare, gritty, Hemingwayesque prose.
“Hungarian foreign correspondent Jászberényi . . . writes with beautiful ferocity about what he’s seen and how he’s lived on his job, here situating most of his stories in the Middle East. . . . . Brutal but with heart, as shown by the excellent colloquial translation; highly recommended for readers of tough-minded fiction, both literary and popular.” ⎯Library Journal (starred review)
Praise for the author's previous collection, The Devil Is a Black Dog
“Heady, dizzying writing. . . . A master class in how to tell a war story.” ⎯Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“[An] impressive debut collection . . . [by] a Hungarian news correspondent who has covered the conflicts in Eastern Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East.” ⎯Publishers Weekly
“In the context of Hungarian literature, Jászberényi is a dangerous heretic, a cosh-wielding ruffian, [his] page[s] ... filled with so much testosterone-fuelled bare-knuckle action.... Whereas Péter Eszterházy, László Krasznahorkai and Péter Nádas write long, intricate sentences full of learned allusions, piling up massive paragraphs, one on top of the other, Jászberényi, like his characters, gets straight to the action.” ⎯Tibor Fischer, Guardian