László Márton: Clever sentences
– Hungary

László Márton is an author, dramatist and a translator born in 1959. He studied the Hungarian and German languages and sociology at ELTE in Budapest. Between 1984 and 1989, he worked as an editor in the Helikon publishing house. He has been a freelance writer since 1990. His first book, the novella collection Nagy-budapesti Rém-üldözés (The Great Budapest Monster-Chase and other stories) was published in 1984, followed by twenty-five diverse works including novels, short stories, dramas and essays. The historical trilogy Testvériség (Fraternity, 2001–2003) tells a fictionalised story of the Ottoman expansion into Hungary combined with the cultural memory of the Baroque era. Márton also translates the classics of German literature; he released a new translation of Faust in 2015. His novel Két obeliszk (Two Obelisks, 2018) depicts the relationship between “Sidonia N.”, an Austrian baroness, with “Karl K.”, a journalist based in Vienna. The first part of the plot takes place in the town of Janovice and Konopiště Castle in Czechia. “The novel contains both hellish world wars of the 20th century, as well as Walpurgis Night. It doesn’t describe the events of the wars, but their precedents. As if the author was more interested in what could turn a crowd into a violent mob,” wrote Edit Domján.