Are there any guilty parties when unrequited love subdues rationality?

Are there any guilty parties when unrequited love subdues rationality?

I’ve read hundreds of books and I would say that this novel is the most detailed psychological study I have ever read. It digs into feeling and motives in exquisite detail, to the point where you ask yourself, how can one person have this much knowledge of human nature? We see a marriage from three perspectives each written in the first person as a conversation with a friend. A man tells his story to a friend in a bar. (This book would make a great 3-act play.) It’s set in Hungary between the Wars; let’s say the late 1930’s.

There’s a lot of blame to go around in these two broken marriages. The man is cold, distant, intellectual and filled with “duty” to running the family business. The first wife is not satisfied with a comfortable but unloving relationship and drives her husband away by prying into his past and looking for a “perfect” marriage. In the second marriage, not to give way any plot, let’s just say he marries his childhood sweetheart who turns out to be a conniving thief. The main theme of the entally class and each person is a bit of a caricature of their class in Europe between the World Wars. He of course is an aristocrat. The first wife is from the upward striving middle class. The second is wife is from the lower class. In a kind of upstairs-downstairs reflection, we get the best picture and the most devastating portrayal of the aristocratic class from a former scullery maid.

Three confessions in the first person narrative that speak from the vortexes of a love triangle: the wife, the husband and the other woman

Some gems: [Of the aristocratic family:] “They all lived under the one roof ,but they lived their lives a long way from each other.” The maid on the aristocrats sitting down to breakfast: “…they dressed for it with as much care as they would for a wedding.” “…he treated his body the way he might treat one of his employees. His body was required to work for him.” “How far off the point talking is when you really want to say something!” “Love and being in love don’t go together, you know.” “…one had to listen with him and pay close attention to whatever it was he was not saying.” “He believed the mind was a power, like any other power that is capable of changing the world: like light, yaklaЕџД±k Porto Riko kadД±n like electricity, like magnetism.”

The novel is translated from the Hungarian. Marai is a genius and this book is a classic. He wrote 42 books and only five have been translated into English, and only since 2004, so we have a lot to look forward to.

His ex-wife (the first) tells her story to a girlfriend in a coffee shop; and the second ex-wife tells her story to a lover in a hotel room

Hungary between the wars is at the backdrop of the disquieting canon of voices that compose Marai’s elegiac portraits of a marriage. The middle class lady, the cultured bourgeois and the destitute maid. Three different versions of the same truth, the same timeline of events, seen through the diverging lenses of subjective interpretations that cast endless shadows over the protagonists, whose fears, betrayals and murderous passions will sentence them to a permanent estrangement from each other, rendering them unable to break through the masks of their unbending social backgrounds and deluded expectations.

Marai constructs a game of mirrors where the reflection of each character is distorted by his or her own perception of reality. Who is the true wife? The one who acts as such or the one who has made a slave of the dignified gentleman? When desperation rules over pride? When the impending loss of the one we were meant to be with dictates our actions?


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