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‘Rare and Ruthless... Perhaps the most significant literary enterprise of our times’ Guardian
Childhood is exhilarating and terrifying. For the young Karl Ove, new houses, classes and friends are met with manic excitement and creeping dread. Adults occupy godlike positions of power, benevolent in the case of his doting mother, tyrannical in the case of his cruel father.
In the now infamously direct style of the My Struggle cycle, Knausgaard describes a time in which victories and defeats are felt keenly and every attempt at self-definition is frustrated. This is a book about family, memory and how we never become quite what we set out to be.
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Via his visceral, immersive art, Knausgaard makes the heart visible - Independent
Knausgaard finds the sublime in the everyday... Boyhood Island reverberates with the joys and anxieties of early youth, and Knausgaard brilliantly recreates their exaggerated feel - Times Literary Supplement
Compelling and addictive... One of the most grown-up works of fiction we have - Observer
Knausgaard's Proustian attention to detail and scrupulous analysis of emotional nuance is almost maddening – but ultimately magnificent - Vogue
One of the most anticipated books of the year (the decade) - Financial Times
His devotees gobble each new volume with an eagerness previously reserved only for box sets of Borgen - Daily Telegraph
Knausgaard transforms the personal and mundane into the universal and perennially significant... There is such depth of feeling beneath the vibrant exterior, such sense of the goodness present in human existence - Spectator
Accessibly and punchily written, an intimate, determined and ultimately successful attempt to shape the tiny mundanities of life into something quite unexpectedly beautiful, compelling and substantial - Metro
Knausgaard is a writer strong enough to survive the hype... A masterpiece for the age of the selfie... Brutally frank about the frustrations of marriage, work and parenthood, it's often horrifying and deeply funny - Observer
Astounding... A work of such sincerity that, to paraphrase Baudelaire, the paper shrivels and flares at the touch of his fiery pen - Quietus
Free-form, fear-filled, densely descriptive…Norway’s biggest literary star since Ibsen… [Knausgaard] has no obvious superiors among the writers now available to an English-reading public - New Statesman
My Struggle is already the most significant literary achievement of the 21st century and we still have three volumes to go - Sunday Express
Boyhood Island is a tuning fork shaking loose the reader's own memories - The Timse
There is more to the case of Knausgaard than brutal hype. The books are beautifully readable and convey an atmosphere of robust authenticity - Prospect
A work of genius - London Review of Books
Peculiarly addictive - Evening Standard
Knausgaard has rocked the world again - Bath Chronicle
Intense, stark and shocking. Also superb - Evening Standard
Superbly translated - Independent
Intense, stark and shocking - Scotsman
The only question that counts is: is it really, really good? And it is - New Statesman
Mr. Knausgaard’s somewhat autobiographical novels are mesmerizing: he is contemporary fiction’s alchemist of the ordinary - New York Times
Zadie Smith may need them “like crack”, but the books of literary sensation Karl Ove Knausgaard prove far more suitable Christmas gift ideas than the rock; easier to score in Waterstones, simpler to wrap - Skinny
About the Author
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.