A Book, Read – #11/2015 – Hamsun, Knut – Tales of Love and Loss

Hamsun has experienced a bit of a resurgence recently.  But it seems mostly that his early novels, and particularly Hunger, are the works receiving attention.  And that’s fine, and makes sense – early Hamsun is uncertain, unfocused, obsessed, obsessive, maniacal, violent, harsh, passionate.  Aligned with our times?  Perhaps.  And yet he wrote all of these books a century ago.

These stories are, well, stories.  He wasn’t a story writer.  He wrote novels.  I would say, though, that his particularly brand of alienation – where characters deliberately push themselves away from other people in a manner that surprises themselves, too, rather than just be edgy or mean or nasty.

Overall, good stories.  I preferred the first half of the book, but I would say that this could be a good place to start with Hamsun.  If you read three stories and like two, then try a novel.  If not – stay away.

The Books, Read page contains a list of all of the books I have read this year.

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