Thursday, November 17, 2011

Out Stealing Horses...

I finished this book today, whilst waiting on buses and such, it was a good book.  It's the story of Trond, and his relationships with those around him.  The story spans 50 years, three generation.  We are introduced to Trond and his friend Jon, his father, a few other characters and minimally his mom and sister, and of coarse his daughter.  All these characters play a short part in Trond's recollections.  Trond at the age of 67 abandons the city and heads to the beautiful mountains of Norway close to the border of Sweden, he reflects on the summer he spent in this area with his dad and the susequent strange events that follow  that summer.  

What I liked about the book: I liked the vivid descriptions, the innocence of Tronds view,  while he was a young lad, I also liked that he just trusted his dad so implicitly. The setting of the book and the characters were very believable, but I did find the situations a little weird.  I have to say I like the boy Trond better than the man Trond.

What I didn't like: maybe this is not so much as I didn't like, but I was a little confused (remember I'm an old blonde) Trond kept thinking of his own mortality, I'm assuming he came up to the farm to die and make peace with his past life.  I did find the unexpected meeting with Lars a little off as well. The lack of conversation was a bit weird also.  Maybe it's just me, but if I met someone from 50 years ago I think I'd ask a few questions. 

I read this book for the Awesome Author Challenge  an enjoyable read, some strangeness, but then that's what makes it interesting.

5 comments:

Jeanne said...

I read this book for my library reading group and enjoyed it very much. Agree with your take on it and find many of the Scandinavian authors can be a bit depressing. Must be those bleak winters.

Mary (Bookfan) said...

Sounds like a good one for a book club to discuss.

bermudaonion said...

It does sound like there's a lot to discuss in this book. I've heard so much about it, I'd like to give it a try.

Jenners said...

I just love the cover image. I hadn't heard anything about this book so thanks for the review.

Parabolic Muse said...

I loved this book! I know what you mean about the lack of conversation. I love scandinavian fiction and many people don't. It's not effusive at all, that's for sure! I think, and I could be wrong, that he wrote it in this minimalist way so we would have an active roll in the relationships rather than passively watching them. However, I'm sure someone could say that it feels lazy of him, or that it's some kind of gimmick. I think if one reads a lot of scandinavian lit they probably are a little more patient with this kind of thing. It doesn't make it the best way! (I'm not much for romanticizing this kind of writing, but I do tend to like it.)

Anyway, it was a wrenching book in many ways. I was reminded of Willa Cather's book Death Comes For the Archbishop. She wrote in this spare, clean way as well.

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