Anewly translated novel from the great rediscovered Hungarian writer: a tautly suspenseful story of unrequited love and its still vivid consequences twenty years later.
What is it to be in love with a pathological liar and fantasist? Esther is, and has been for the more than two decades since Lajos disappeared from her life. Now all these years later, Lajos is returning, and the news brings both panic and excitement. While no longer young and thoroughly skeptical about Lajos, Esther still remembers how incredibly alive she felt when he was around. His presence bewitches everyone, and the greatest part of his charm—and his danger—lies in the deftness with which he wields that delicate power. Friends rally round protectively, but Lajos’s arrival begins a day of high theater that will leave Esther’s life dramatically changed again.
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|Title of Mystery & Detective eBook: Esther's Inheritance|
|Release Date: 11-04-2008|
|Allowed Countries (hover)|
|Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group|
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|Parent title||Esther's Inheritance|
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I don’t know what else God has in store for me. But before I die I want to write down what happened the day Lajos visited me for the last time and robbed me. I have been waiting three years to set this down. Now I feel an irresistible voice urging me on, insisting I should record the events of that day—and everything I know about Lajos—because it is my duty to do so and because I don’t have much time. There’s no mistaking such a voice. That is why I obey it, in God’s name.
I am no longer young nor healthy and soon I must die. Am I still afraid of dying? . . . That Sunday when Lajos visited us for the last time, I was, among other things, cured of my fear of death. Maybe time, which has not spared me, maybe memory, which is almost as ruthless as time, maybe some peculiar grace that, as my faith teaches, is sometimes granted the undeserving and the willful, maybe simply experience and old age enable me now to gaze on death with equanimity. Life has been extraordinarily kind to me, and, just as extraordinarily, it has robbed me of everything . . . what else can happen? Die I must, because that’s how things are, and because I have fulfilled my duties.
I realize that’s a big word to use, and now that I see it written down I feel a little scared. It’s a haughty word that I shall have to answer for sometime in front of someone. How long was it before I recognized my duty and how I resisted it, screaming and protesting most desperately, before I gave in. The first time I felt death might be salvation was when I knew that death was resolution and peace. Life alone is struggle and humiliation. And what a struggle it was