Author Fanus Neagu dies at 79

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Author, screenwriter and publicist Fanus Neagu died this very morning at the Elias Hospital in Bucharest, at age 79.

A highly-talented storyteller and short story writer, inspired by the countryside and life in the Danube ports in the south-eastern parts of Romania, his native Braila, Neagu came to be known as a great storyteller of Romanian literature, with his picturesque descriptions, lyricism and word savour having won him well-deserved accolades.

He made his literary debut with „Dusman cu lumea” (Foe to the World), in 1954. His editorial debut came four years later, in 1959, with „Ningea in Baragan” (It Was Snowing in Baragan). He continued with collections of stories and short stories including „Dincolo de nisipuri” (Beyond the Sands) in 1962; „Cantonul parasit” (The Abandoned Block Station) in 1964; „Vara buimaca” (A Dizzying Summer) in 1967; „Casa care se leagana” (The Rocking House) in 1972; „Pierdut in Balcania” (Lost in Balkanland) in 1982; „Povestiri din drumul Brailei” (Stories from Braila); „Partida de pocher” (The Poker Match) in 1994, and „O corabie spre Bethleem” (A Ship Sailing to Bethlehem).

Some of his stories and short stories were translated and included in foreign collections abroad.

As a novelist, his full consecration came with „Ingerul a strigat” (The Angel Shouted) in 1968, which became a reference work in the post-war Romanian literature. His first novel was followed by „Frumosii nebuni ai marilor orase. Fals tratat despre iubire” (The Beautiful Madmen of Big Cities. A False Treatise on Love) in 1976; „Scaunul singuratatii” (The Chair of Loneliness) in 1988, all of which won the grand prize of the Romanian Writers” Guild, and „Tara hotilor the cai” (The Country of Horse Thieves) in 1991, „Amantul Marii Doamne Dracula” (The Lover of Grand Dame Dracula) in 2001. In 2004, he published a two-volume novel called „Asfintit de Europa, Rasarit de Asie. Jurnal cu fata ascunsa” (Europe Falling, Asia Rising. A Hidden-Face Diary).

Also attracted by drama, he wrote a two-act play called „Eclipsa de zgomote” (Eclipse of Noisy Sounds) in 1970; „Scoica de lemn” (The Wooden Shell) in 1978; „Casa de la miezul noptii sau Paiata soseste la timp” (The Midnight House or The Harlequin Arrives on Time), all winners of the Writers” Guild awards and „Olelie” in 1983. He was the sole writer or co-author of film scripts including „Lumina de iulie” (July Light) in 1963; „Casa de la miezul noptii” (The Midnight House) in 1975; „Lisca” in 1983; „Sosesc pasarile calatoare” (The Travelling Birds are Coming Home) in 1984; „Casa din vis” (The Dream House); „Terente – regele baltilor” (Ternete, the King of Swamps).

He contributed articles, reportages and stories to many daily newspapers and magazines, and wrote prefaces to many sports and tourist books. He is also the author of witty sports comments in the Romania lieterara magazine, later on collected in the 1972 „Cronici de carnaval” (Carnival Chronicles) and the 1977 „Cronici afurisite sau Poeme cantate aiurea” (Accursed Chronicles or Falsettos).

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