Tuesday, 6 May 2008

a harvest of tares

on very rare occasions, i buy the one or other of those women's magazines. it may happen once or twice a year. on even rarer occasions, i find something worthwhile to read in them as well, which was the case with the last one that i bought in march.
i read a book review about this small piece of norwegian-rooted literature, hjalmar hjort boyesen's "a harvest of tares" ("selbstbestimmung"). a small german publisher, Lilienfeld, had rediscovered it somewhere, and decided to do a reprint, which was released a bit more than a month ago.

anyway, i had read the review, and it stuck on me like glue. i searched almost all of lüneburg's bookstores (i still prefer buying books in person, it is so much nicer), but none of them had it in store, and i was not quite sure if it really really would be worth spending 19 euro. then, i had the chance to read some pages on a bookstore online, and decided to purchase. today, it arrived. and, what should i say, i only read the first chapter so far, but i love it already.

in the center of everything stands hulda, the eldest daughter of a norwegian reverend in a fjord-parish at the end of the 19th century. she is young, beautiful and headstrong, and she is supposed to marry the new young and extremely inexperienced curate. but then, also, there is this artist, who is everything that the curate is not, whom she falls in love with, and whom she eventually will follow to a new life in the united states.

i don't know how to describe exactly how the book is written, or what makes it so special, but it is extremely appealing, it feels interesting and what i have read touches me deeply. i can relate to this girl in a way that i haven't even related to some of jane austen's characters, whom i love dearly. maybe it's because i know the beauty of the fjords, or maybe it is because i also am an eldest doughter (even though in totally different circumstances).

as i said, i haven't read so very much yet, but i can't wait to continue. so, with all my heart, i already strongly recommend it.

1 comment:

Andreas Öjerfors said...

You make me want to read this.

Also, pretty cool book cover.