A man in Love by Karl Ove Knausgaard

A man in Love

A man in Love by Karl Ove Knausgaard

Norwegian fiction

Translator –  Don Bartlett

Original title – Min Kamp Andre Bok

Source – library

Well its over a year since part one of the six  vol collection was released ,I reviewed it here and now am reviewing part two .I did a lot of bio on the first part of the collection so will get start into part two of My struggle .This book is a huge hit in his homeland they even had to make days to not talk about the book at work it was such a water cooler moment book  in his homeland .

29 July 2008

The summer has been long ,and it still isn’t over .I finished the first part of the novel on 26 June ,and since then ,for more than a month the nursery school had been closed , and we have had Vanja and Heidi at home with all the extra work that involves .I have never understood the point of holidays , never felt the need for them  and have always just wanted to do more work .

The opening lines of a man in love

Well in part two we have seemingly jumped a few years and Karl is settled and is struggling as a writer ,he is married and as the title says a man in love ,the book does start very slowly as we meet Karl at a kids party .The story does tend to drift but it has a sense of times being recalled a natural feel as we all do sort mixing or memories  into a mix tape of our life so we move back and forward but it isn’t jarring .We see a man who like most of us  (I turned forty over a year ago and this book rung true too me ) is struggling to discover who he is man .On the surface this could seem boring it is just an ordinary story of a middle class man in Norway ,living having kids ,looking after kids .But it is the brutal honest nature that Knausgaard has in his prose that lifts this from being a man in mid-life drifting towards crisis .I also love the interludes into books and music splattered through the book .

When I went back up Linda had put some music on , one of the Tom Waits CDS that had come out after I lost interest in him and with which I therefore have no associations other than that they were Tom Waits-like .Once Linda had reworked some Waits text for a performance in Stockholm ,which she said was among the most entertaining and satisfying stuff she had done and she still had an intense ,indeed intimate relationship with his music .

Got say I’m with Linda on this I still get Waits

I loved this although as I said it is a very slow starter one of those books that you have to slowly get into ,but it is his power of describing his world that kept me there ,I feel he above all writers I ve read in the last few years can make the ordinary seem extraordinary .In his hands even child care ,which to me isn’t the most appealing subject to read (sure some people will disagree with me ) appeals as we see Karl grow into a new role of being a father and of course ,trying to avoid what mistakes his own father made when bring him up . It is also feels at time like Karl is looking to admit maybe he struggled (great insight Stu as the book as a whole is called my struggle )  but it is hard to admit where we fail in life and Karl is the master of this  IMHO .I know await part three of this collection .

Have you read these two books

That was the month that was January 2013 – a quarter million milestone

snowy treeWell the nights are starting to lighten its been a busy month here at Winston’s tower ,some how shocked how I managed to get 14 books read this month but a number where rather short .I had a number of night shifts and was off for the last five days of the month .I managed to have a little more time than normal to read .Any way favourite book of the month Train to Budapest by Dacia Marani ,which I shall review early next month ,other honorable mentions go to The eleven by Pierre Michon and the two Donald Antrim reissues I read .A good book finding month as many of you may know I tend to have tight book finances ,when it comes to what is available to spend sad to say I had to return to Amazon after nearly a year just because of cost and availability of the books I want for three books ,I hope in summer trips out to cities with Amanda will mean I can buy books in shops I want .But the other side of this is I am a huge second-hand buyer and this month saw me hit gold with a number of penguins a Roman Gary ,Andre Gide ,Henrich Boll and a Samuel Beckett novel .Which eased my conscious re using amazon as some of  these books  are out of print and will be reviewed on here which I hope will get people to find them all out as they are   all writers I feel the need to read and think other people should these are the ones that explain modern literature in France and Germany as they tend to inspire or have been read by most modern writers in these countries .So the month ahead well here at Winston towers two dates spring to mind ,the first is valentines day as a romantic at heart I’ve my book ready for the day and will be spending time myself with the darling Amanda .The other date in my diary is Amanda’s birthday which may not be so bookish as she isn’t a huge reader but sure we will have a lovely time and I ll get her some great gifts .For the blog I sit on the verge of a quarter million views in my stats sometime today or tomorrow I will pass that total so thanks to every one who visits on a regular or just once all welcome  great that you all come and visit the blog .The picture at the top was taken in the middle of the month out with Winston in the middle of the snow .

What was your favourite book last month ?

Plans for next ?


It’s a man’s world too

The year of feminist classics is under way with Ana Amy Iris and  Emily at helm their reviews of classic women’s writing this year  .Well here is the rub guys why don’t us male bloggers do a year of big male writers .Those scary male writers people are scared of Mailer ,Bellow ,Hemingway ,Steinbeck ,Self ,O’Brien,Kerouac ,Burroughs,Xaiver Herbert ,Tim Winton and also the two new peirne titles fit the bill as well  .So if any male bloggers want join and sort out a reading list of a month books that be great .There is great manly writing that is getting less read these days so why don’t we promote them  as well !!!


June 2023


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