I can finally relate to Harry Potter fans! With each new release of Knausgaard's autobiographical novel, My Struggle, I eagerly wait outside Powell's before it opens so I can get my copy and immediately begin reading it. Book Five is a continuation of the finest literary collection of the century. I am highly anticipating the final installment so that I can finish the series, go back to the first book, and start all over again. It takes a lot to knock The Boss off my top spot, but Karl Ove Knausgaard did it. Recommended By Jeffrey J., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
The fifth book of Knausgaard’s powerful My Struggle series is written with tremendous force and sincerity. As a nineteen-year-old, Karl Ove moves to Bergen and invests all of himself in his writing. But his efforts get the opposite effect—he wants it so much that he gets writer’s block. At the same time, he sees his friends, one-by-one, publish their debuts. He suspects that he will never get anything published. Book Five is also a book about strong new friendships and a shattering love affair. Then one day Karl Ove reaches two crucial points in his life: his father dies, and shortly thereafter, he completes his first novel.
"There were moments when I wondered who was the better comparison: Wordsworth, for the ways that nature bent to Karl Ove's mood and past selves composed and recomposed themselves in his recollection, or Harry Potter, for the readable, epic soap opera about a young student learning to wave his magic wand about. Few writers create so confidential a bond with the reader, at times uncomfortable, unwanted but also undeniable. Occasionally I fancied him an old friend. An infuriating, unstable, self-obsessed and well-read friend who outstays his welcome, admittedly. But a friend nonetheless." The Independent
"The limbo that Knausgaard essays in this book is, like so much of his life, particular to him but also highly familiar to everyone else...He’s the rare writer who has made self-absorption work for him." The Washington Post
"[T]he eerie thing is that, at times, it is as if we are not within the pages of this book at all, but outside it and in his confidence. We understand that [Knausgaard] is ambitious to write a novel that will make his name and we suppress, as we read, the acknowledgment that this achievement, this extraordinary work of which he has been dreaming, is the book we hold in our hands." The Guardian
"Replicates the vivid, overwhelming sense of being alive on the page....We may all be hooked on Karl Ove’s past, his triumphs and disasters, glory and silliness, but his struggle is our struggle, too – for meaning, love, and friendship in a world beautiful and baffling." The National
"Amusing episodes coexist alongside weighty, meditative, and essayistic passages on art and literature....Those who have come this far in the series will not be disappointed by book five; it is a pleasure to witness the gradual emergence of a dedicated artist over the course of a decade." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
"[A] bildungsroman about literary victory snatched from drunken self-loathing.... An admirably seriocomic look at a headlong leap into maturity." Kirkus Reviews (Starred
About the Author
Karl Ove Knausgaard was born in Norway in 1968. His debut novel Out of This World won the Norwegian Critics Prize in 2004 and his A Time for Everything was a finalist for the Nordic Council Prize. For My Struggle: Book One, Knausgaard received the Brage Award in 2009, the 2010 Book of the Year Prize in Morgenbladet, and the P2 Listeners’ Prize. My Struggle: Book One was a New Yorker Book of the Year and Book Two was listed among the Wall Street Journal's 2013 Books of the Year. My Struggle is a New York Times Best Seller and has been translated into more than fifteen languages. Knausgaard lives in Sweden with his wife and four children.