The Central European Classics Series started when Timothy Garton Ash, general editor of the series, began to note down titles recommended to him by local writers in dim cafes in Budapest and Prague, in the heyday of political transition in East-Central Europe in 1989-1990. Garton Ash's aim, to take these works of nineteenth-and early twentieth century classic fiction 'out of the ghetto', onto the shelves of Western booksellers, and into the consciousness of Western readers has been successfully achieved. The series got completed in 2002, reissued with new covers in 2003.