The last wolf = El ultimo lobo

by Krasznahorkai, László,

Format: Print Book 2016
Availability: Available at 3 Libraries 3 of 4 copies
Available (3)
Location Collection Call #
CLP - Main Library First Floor - Fiction Stacks FICTION Krasznahorkai
Location  CLP - Main Library
Collection  First Floor - Fiction Stacks
Call Number  FICTION Krasznahorkai
Monroeville Public Library Fiction KRASZNAHORKAI LASZLO
Location  Monroeville Public Library
Collection  Fiction
Northern Tier Regional Library Fiction FIC KRASZ
Location  Northern Tier Regional Library
Collection  Fiction
Call Number  FIC KRASZ
Unavailable (1)
Location Collection Status
Mt. Lebanon Public Library Fiction CHECKED OUT
Location  Mt. Lebanon Public Library
Collection  Fiction

The Last Wolf, translated by George Szirtes, features a classic, obsessed Krasznahorkai narrator, a man hired to write (by mistake, by a glitch of fate) the true tale of the last wolf of Extremadura, a barren stretch of Spain. This miserable experience (being mistaken for another, dragged about a cold foreign place, appalled by a species' end) is narrated--all in a single sentence--as a sad looping tale, a howl more or less, in a dreary wintry Berlin bar to a patently bored bartender.

The Last Wolf is Krasznahorkai in a maddening nutshell--with the narrator trapped in his own experience (having internalized the extermination of the last creature of its kind and "locked Extremadura in the depths of his own cold, empty, hollow heart")--enfolding the reader in the exact same sort of entrapment to and beyond the end, with its first full-stop period of the book.

Herman, "a peerless virtuoso of trapping who guards the splendid mysteries of an ancient craft gradually sinking into permanent oblivion," is asked to clear a forest's last "noxious beasts." In Herman I: the Game Warden, he begins with great zeal, although in time he "suspects that maybe he was 'on the wrong scent.'" Herman switches sides, deciding to track entirely new game...

In Herman II: The Death of a Craft, the same situation is viewed by strange visitors to the region. Hyper-sexualized aristocratic officers on a very extended leave are enjoying a saturnalia with a bevy of beauties in the town nearest the forest. With a sense of effete irony, they interrupt their orgies to pitch in with the manhunt of poor Herman, and in the end, "only we are left to relish the magic bouquet of this escapade..." Translated by John Batki.

Published Reviews
Publisher's Weekly Review: "The Last Wolf" and "Herman," two thematically linked novellas from the Man Booker International Prize-winning Hungarian writer Krasznahorkai, may be far shorter than his past masterworks Sátántangó and The Melancholy of Resistance, but they provide a showcase for the density and lucidity that made those works great. "The Last Wolf" is the weightier of the two, concerning a washed-up professor who recounts, in one long sentence addressed to a barman, the story of how, in a case of mistaken identity, he was invited to the Spanish region of Extramadura and offered his choice of subjects to write about by the foundation paying for the trip. He chooses to report on the story of the area's last wolf pack and unearths a saga of extinction, told by a succession of hunters and wardens, that is by turns comic, absurd, tragic, and harrowingly beautiful. "Herman" is a two-part story beginning with the game warden of the title who, despairing of the bureaucracy and disregard of the human world, abruptly switches sides and begins laying his traps for men instead. And in the bizarre second part, a group of hedonists come to town for a little saturnalia and to contemplate "the dreadful beauty" of existence, only to be swept up in the manhunt for Herman. On their own, both volumes are slender storytelling jewels, but together they are an existential inquiry into the human animal by a unique and ingenious writer. (Sept.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Krasznahorkai, László -- Translations into English.
Aggression and violence -- Fiction.
Short stories, Hungarian -- Translations into English.
Authors -- Fiction.
Wolves -- Fiction.
Extinction (Biology) -- Fiction.
Game wardens -- Fiction.
Forests and forestry -- Fiction.
Trapping -- Fiction.
Hedonism -- Fiction.
Existentialism -- Fiction.
Extremadura (Spain) -- Fiction.
Experimental fiction.
Hunting stories.
Short stories.
Upside-down books.
Publisher New York :New Directions Publishing Corporation,2016
Other Titles Herman.
Game warden.
Death of a craft.
Utolsó farkas.
Herman, a vadőr.
Mesterségnek vége.
Short stories.
Last wolf ;
Ultimo lobo
Last wolf
Contributors Szirtes, George, 1948- translator.
Batki, John, translator.
Krasznahorkai, László. Utolsó farkas.
Krasznahorkai, László. Herman, a vadőr.
Krasznahorkai, László. Mesterségnek vége.
Language English
Text in English.
Notes Titles from separate title pages; works issued back-to-back and inverted.
The last wolf: Originally published in Hungarian in 2009 as: Az utolsó farkas; also published in Spanish in 2009 as: El ultimo lobo.
Herman: Originally published in Hungarian in 2007 as two short stories: Herman, a vadőr; and, A mesterségnek vége.
Description 76, 52 pages ; 19 cm
ISBN 9780811226080
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