az aranyember – Jókai Mór

hungarian classic

572 pages


via Goodreads: Mór Jókai (1825-1904) was the first Hungarian novelist to achieve world fame. “The Man with the Golden Touch” was published in several foreign languages in his lifetime, appearing in more than one English edition under the title “Tímár’s Two Worlds” and in the U.S.A. as “Modern Midas.”

Set in a small town on the Danube – Komárom – where Jókai had spent his childhood, in the early years of the nineteenth century, it is the story of Mihály Timár. Chance brings him into a fabulous fortune, and from then on, he succeeds in all ventures he undertakes, and everything he touches turns to gold: his only failure, and one which comes to turn his riches to dross, is his marriage. In his search for happiness, he comes to hate his wealth. He finally escapes from his double life, and finds refuge on a wild island in the Danube where the love of a young girl, Noémi, gives real meaning to his existence.

“The Man with the Golden Touch” is a jewel of both Hungarian and world literature, and is indeed one of the most beautiful romantic novels. [Corvina Press, 1963 edition; inside book cover]

synopsis : **contains spoilers**

The man with the golden touch is about a man called Mihály Timár, who saves a turkish treasury accountants and his daughters life by sailing them and their wheat (where they hid their stolen goods) into save waters hiding the wheat by drowning the boat and while the accountant poisons himself he confesses about the treasure and asks the man to take care (and if possible) marry his daughter.

while he turns the treasures into profit the daughter, Timea, is set at a wealthy but really greedy mans house where his wife and daughter treat her like a servant. they even go as far as to play a joke on her with a local soldier who often visits them, to make her believe the soldier wants to marry her so she sews a veil for herself what the daughter of the house will snatch from her. but at the last minute Mihály steps into the picture and marries Timea saving her virtue. Mihály even though gains respect by being generous to others has a dark secret.

at the island where they drowned the boat he has a lover, a girl who will have a son with him and a man who tries to milk some benefit from them every time he sets food on the island by threatening them to sue them and chase them out, Mihály saves the day by renting the island for the next 90 years and leaves the right to use it on the mother and the daughter (his lover). forming a grudge the bad guy tries to kill him but drowns in the icy water of hungary’s biggest lake, Balaton.

Mihály takes this opportunity because the man robs him of his wallet and belongings so that he poses the man as his own corpse after its unidentifiable.

his widow, Timea who remained true to him even though she formed a love towards the soldier from before finally be able to listen to her heart and marry him.

I gave it 2/5 stars because mens are pigs. both Timeas love, who was in the game of making her humiliated by the original owners of the house , and Mihály who pose as a saint but still leading a double life.


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