Synopses & Reviews
Known for his brilliantly dark fictional visions, László Krasznahorkai is one of the most respected European writers of his generation. Here, he brings us on a journey through China at the dawn of the new millennium. On the precipice of its emergence as a global power, China is experiencing cataclysms of modernity as its harsh Maoist strictures meet the chaotic flux of globalism. What remains of the Middle Kingdom’s ancient cultural riches? And can a Westerner truly understand China’s past and present—or the murky waters where the two meet?
Destruction and Sorrow beneath the Heavens is both a travel memoir and the chronicle of a distinct intellectual shift as one of the most captivating contemporary writers and thinkers begins to engage with the cultures of Asia and the legacies of its interactions with Europe in a newly globalized society. Rendered in English by award-winning translator Ottilie Mulzet, Destruction and Sorrow beneath the Heavens is an important work, marking the emergence of Krasznahorkai as a truly global novelist.
Praise for Krasznahorkai
“The contemporary Hungarian master of the apocalypse.”—Susan Sontag
“Krasznahorkai delights in unorthodox description; no object is too insignificant for his worrying gaze. . . . He offers us stories that are relentlessly generative and defiantly irresolvable. They are haunting, pleasantly weird, and ultimately, bigger than the worlds they inhabit.”—New York Times
“Krasznahorkai is an expert with the complexity of human obsessions. Each of his books feel like an event, a revelation.”—Daily Beast
"He offers us stories that are relentlessly generative and defiantly irresolvable. They are haunting, pleasantly weird, and, ultimately, bigger than the worlds they inhabit." The New York Times Book Review
"The excitement of Krasznahorkai's writing is that he has come up with his own original forms - and one of the most haunting is his first, . There is nothing else like it in contemporary literature." Adam Thirwell
" is a monster of a novel: compact, cleverly constructed, often exhilarating, and possessed of a distinctive, compelling vision - but a monster nonetheless...The grandeur is clearly palpable." The New York Review of Books
"Krasznahorkai is alone among European novelists now in his intensity and originality. One of the most mysterious artists now at work." The Guardian
"Profoundly unsettling." Colm Tóibín
"His inexhaustible yet claustrophobic prose, with its long, tight, weaving sentences, each like a tantalising tightrope between banality and apocalypse, places the author in a European tradition of Beckett, Bernhard, and Kafka." James Wood The New Yorker
A dark, haunting masterpiece by the author of and
Now in paperback, , the novel that inspired Béla Tarr's classic film, is proof that the devil has all the good times. Set in an isolated hamlet, the novel unfolds over the course of a few rain-soaked days. Only a dozen inhabitants remain in the bleak village, rank with the stench of failed schemes, betrayals, failure, infidelity, sudden hopes, and aborted dreams. "Their world," in the words of the renowned translator George Szirtes is "rough and ready, lost somewhere between the cosmic and tragic, in one small insignificant corner of the cosmos. Theirs is the dance of death." Into this world comes, it seems, a messiah...
About the Author
László Krasznahorkai is a Hungarian writer living in Berlin. Three of his works have been made into award-winning films by the renowned filmmaker Béla Tarr: Werckmeister Harmonies, Satantango, and The Horse from Turin. He has written seven novels and numerous other works, including Animalinside, also available from Sylph Editions.Ottilie Mulzet is a literary critic and award-winning Hungarian translator.