Dancing in the Dark
|Author:||Karl Ove Knausgaard|
18 years old and fresh out of high school, Karl Ove Knausgaard moves to a tiny fisherman's village far north of the polar circle to work as a school teacher. He has no interest in the job itself - or in any other job for that matter. His intention is to save up enough money to travel while finding the space and time to start his writing career. Initially everything looks fine: He writes his first few short stories, finds himself accepted by the hospitable locals and receives flattering attention from several beautiful local girls. But then, as the darkness of the long polar nights start to cover the beautiful landscape, Karl Ove's life also takes a darker turn. The stories he writes tend to repeat themselves, his drinking escalates and causes some disturbing blackouts, his repeated attempts at losing his virginity end in humiliation and shame, and to his own distress he also develops romantic feelings towards one of his 13-year-old students. Along the way, there are flashbacks to his high school years and the roots of his current problems. And then there is the shadow of his father, whose sharply increasing alcohol consumption serves as an ominous backdrop to Karl Ove's own lifestyle.
The fourth part of a sensational literary cycle that has been hailed as 'perhaps the most important literary enterprise of our times' (Rachel Cusk, Guardian).
"Why would you read a six-volume, 3,600 page Norwegian novel about a man writing a six-volume, 3,600 page novel? The short answer is that it is breathtakingly good and so you cannot stop yourself, and would not want to" New York Times Book Review "It's unbelievable...I need the next volume like crack. It's completely blown my mind" Zadie Smith "Perhaps the most significant literary enterprise of our times" -- Rachel Cusk Guardian "Knausgaard perfectly captures the heady mixture of elation and confusion to be found in late adolescence... My Struggle remains addictive, intensely funny and intensely serious. Like the young man here portrayed, it is "full to the brim with energy and life" Times Literary Supplement "At the end of this bittersweet stint in the far north, translated again with both dynamism and delicacy by Don Bartlett, the last track invoked happens to be that talisman of the late John Peel: "Teenage Kicks" by The Undertones. For all its manic overdub of detail, Dancing in the Dark delivers a knockout kick" -- Boyd Tonkin Independent
Karl Ove Knausgaard's first novel, Out of the World, was the first ever debut novel to win the Norwegian Critics' Prize and his second, A Time to Every Purpose Under Heaven, was widely acclaimed. A Death in the Family, the first of the My Struggle cycle of novels, was awarded the prestigious Brage Award. The My Struggle cycle has been heralded as a masterpiece wherever it appears.