különös házasság (strange marriage) by Mikszáth Kálmán

416 pages
Published 1993 (first published 1900)

synopsis via Goodreads: The plot of A Strange Marriage is based on a true story. A young man of noble birth, Count János Buttler, is about to be married to his childhood sweetheart, the daughter of a neighbouring squire … The ensuing adventures of János are set against the background of the Hungarian countryside in the early 19th century.

The story unites romance and realism. Mikszáth gives a vivid impression of the feudal power of the nobility and the unappealable authority of the Catholic Church.

A Strange Marriage continues to be one of the most popular Hungarian novels, and it has been dramatized and filmed.

Thoughts:  even though hungarian classics tend to get tedious and hard to read because of the huge gap in my own native language as it evolved over time, this was a fairly enjoyable read. the screen adaptation was word by word and true to the books own story.
The story teaches wit and cunning but honest and morally right planning to get out of situations that caused by rich man who try to sweep their own negligence and wrongdoing under the carpet. How someone without any money or power falls prey to these “noble” mans plan to wash clean his own daughter who falls pregnant after having an affair with the local Catholic priest. the story shows how the church is corrupt just as much as the rich people think they can do anything with money.
I loved the fact that there was an engineer who made a wooden elevator without any previous schooling or diploma in his hand and had enormous amount of ideas to build powermachines to lessen the human burden of that times work.
I usually don’t love happy endings, but this book was finished with one that even left me with a good feeling about it.
I gave it 3/5 stars rating.
if anyone is interested in the hungarian language screen adaptation you can watch it here (im not sure if the subtitles work on youtube well, since i watched it without them.)
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