Just finished reading this novel, "The Good Winter," by the Portuguese author João Tordo. It's excellently claustrophobic and fulfillingly scary. There's a lot of literature that ought to be translated and this is among it.
I was reminded of "Heart of Darkness," "Apocalypse Now," Stephen King's "Misery," and the movie "Deliverance" as I read. The protagonist is a milquetoasty and hypochondriacal Portuguese writer who suffers from existential angst (and, it would seem, writer's block). He goes to Hungary for a European writers' conference, basically a junket paid for by well-meaning Swedes. He meets some fellow writers and hangers-on there, at least one of them truly obnoxious, who invite him to the country house of a famous movie director near Rome where they are all going for a combination retreat and marketing opportunity. They wind up at the remote but ultramodern manor house in a thick woods with only one road out. At that point, things go seriously wrong (I won't reveal the details). It's really gripping, but it's more than just a page-turner; it's good literature.
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