If anyone has taken the time to read the series of reflections on his life by Karl Ove Knausgaard, they have likely been riveted by his extraordinary reflections of a simple but complex and deep life on an island northern Norway in the 1980s and 1990s.
Reading the third volume was an enthralling treat that kept me up til late, unable to let go and stop reading. Its compelling on many different levels. As one reviewer said, “I needed to read; it was like an addiction.” But if superb reading is an addiction, that has to be good.
Each sentence is something you want to reread, the language so sonorous and seductive. Here’s an example:
“So much has happened and with such impact that the small incidents that took place in childhoods have no more gravity than the dust stirred up by a passing car, or the seeds of a withering dandelion dispersed by the breath of a small mouth.”
And here is another equally as rapturous:
“Winter passed, spring came, with its light, which every day held the passage to night open for a little longer, with its cold rain, causing the snow to slump and dwindle.”
Yes, there is lots of onomatopoeia, but it makes it all the richer. Never forced.
The book makes we want to visit Norway, and particularly the islands in the north with its spare landscape and buildings. Luckily, as I am in travel PR, I am going to target a destination or small hotel to reach out to for promotion in the US. Surely with the sensation these volumes have created there is more interest in this fascinating part of the world.
To be continued.. And oh, by the way, check out this review in the NY Times.