Whether personal or political, all attitudes, stands, positions in the Kunderian vision come up short. He will kill off three of his quartet and allow the fourth to disappear from the book, presumably from a lightness of being; but his true story, the one to which he gives honest service, is the operation of his own mind as it formulates and finds images for the disastrous history of his country in his lifetime.
His novels have all the unpredictability and changeability of mountain weather, and are marked by an almost compulsive disregard for the laws of genre.
Kundera is a man of the Enlightenment, and is not loath to champion reason over emotion, pointing out, as he has frequently done in his essays as well as his fiction, that many of the worst disasters mankind has suffered were spawned by those who attended most passionately to the dictates of the heart.
Kundera simultaneously portrays the intimate and the profound. This is a beautiful book.— Lily Power