Pushkin Press £8.99 (460pp) £8.54 from the Independent Bookshop: 08430 600 030
Beware of Pity, By Stefan Zweig
Friday 11 November 2011
Why re-translate a 20th-century novel? When the book concerned is Zweig's sole full-length work of fiction, and the translator the superlative Anthea Bell, the question answers itself.
In its earlier English version, almost 70 years old, this throat-gripping, heart-wringing tale of a blithe young Austrian cavalry officer who inspires the hopeless love of a disabled girl in a garrison town in 1914 read like a deeply touching story about the perils of trifling with another's soul.
Now it appears as the disquieting masterpiece it is. For all Zweig's excursions and digressions, the narrative truly gallops along, with the psychological suspense of Hofmiller's toxic pity and its outcome matched by the looming doom of crippled old Europe.
ReviewThese heroes in a half shell should have been left in hibernation
Sek, k'athjilari! (That’s “yes, definitely” to non-native speakers).TV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Jack the Ripper: Scientist who claims to have identified notorious killer has 'made serious DNA error'
- 2 Banksy arrest hoax: Internet duped by fake online report claiming artist's identity has been revealed
- 3 Drink alcohol and eat meat to improve male fertility - but cut down on coffee, studies suggest
- 4 Former East 17 frontman Brian Harvey turns up at Downing Street and 'demands to speak to Prime Minister'
- 5 The inventor of the Facebook 'like' button says he never made a 'dislike' button because he feared the 'unfortunate consequences'
Doctor Who, Flatline - review: Clara isn’t half bad as the Time Lord
Downton Abbey review series 5, episode 5: Period drama falls disappointingly flat
Star Wars memorabilia called a 'bit of plastic' on Antiques Roadshow by Fiona Bruce valued at £50,000
Fury, film review: Brad Pitt is intriguing as unsympathetic war hero
Star Wars Episode 7 has almost finished filming
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
London bus driver 'kicks gay couple off for kissing'
Lord Freud: Tory welfare minister apologises after saying disabled people are 'not worth’ the minimum wage
Lord Freud hangs on as MPs of all parties 'call for his head' over disability comments