The Most Beautiful Night of the Soul: More Stories from the Middle East and Beyond


Product Details

$15.00  $13.80
New Europe Books
Publish Date
5.3 X 0.6 X 8.2 inches | 0.5 pounds
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About the Author


Sándor Jászberényi (Shahn-dor Yahs-ber-ay-ñee) is the author of the critically acclaimed short story collection The Devil Is a Black Dog: Stories from the Middle East and Beyond (first English edition, New Europe Books, 2014; UK/Commonwealth edition: Scribe, 2015; India edition: Speaking Tiger Books, 2015; translator: Matt Henderson Ellis). The Most Beautiful Night of the Soul won Hungary's prestigious Libri Literary Prize. As a correspondent for Hungarian news sites, Jászberényi has covered the conflict with Islamic State, unrest in Ukraine, the revolutions in Egypt and Libya, the Gaza War, and the Darfur crisis. His stories and poems have been published in English in AGNI, Guernica, Tablet, the Brooklyn Rail,, and Pilvax, and his writings have appeared in the Wall Street Journal and New York Times Magazine. Jászberényi, who divides his time between Budapest and Cairo, is currently writing a novel.


Paul Olchváry, a native of Amherst, New York, spent much of his adult life in Hungary and has translated numerous Hungarian novels into English for such publishers as Simon & Schuster, New Directions, Hougton Mifflin, Northwestern, and Steerforth. He has received translation grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and Hungary's Milán Füst Foundation. He lives in Williamstown, Massachusetts.


"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