Dancing in the Dark: My Struggle Book 4 (Knausgaard) Hardcover – 5 Mar 2015
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"A living hero" (Jonathan Lethem Guardian)
"A work of genius" (Ben Lerner London Review of Books)
"Fires every nerve ending while summoning in the reader the sheer sense of how amazing it is to be alive" (Jeffrey Eugenides New York Times)
"Beautifully human... Being drawn into his world is an ineluctable pleasure" (Melissa Katsoulis The Times)
"It has strong claim to be the great literary event of the twenty-first century" (Guardian)
"Why would you read a six-volume, 3,600 page Norwegian novel about a man writing a six-volume, 3,600 page novel? The short answer is that it is breathtakingly good and so you cannot stop yourself, and would not want to" (New York Times Book Review)
"It's unbelievable...I need the next volume like crack. It's completely blown my mind" (Zadie Smith)
"Perhaps the most significant literary enterprise of our times" (Rachel Cusk Guardian)
"Knausgaard perfectly captures the heady mixture of elation and confusion to be found in late adolescence... My Struggle remains addictive, intensely funny and intensely serious. Like the young man here portrayed, it is "full to the brim with energy and life"" (Times Literary Supplement)
"At the end of this bittersweet stint in the far north, translated again with both dynamism and delicacy by Don Bartlett, the last track invoked happens to be that talisman of the late John Peel: “Teenage Kicks” by The Undertones. For all its manic overdub of detail, Dancing in the Dark delivers a knockout kick" (Boyd Tonkin Independent)
"The narrator may be intellectually earnest, an aesthete who mediates on the sublime, but he is also a hapless fool, prone to Chaplinesque pratfalls. In exposing himself as a bundle of contradictions, Knausgaard allows us to see ourselves...it works wonderfully well" (Blake Morrison Guardian)
"If the function of literature is to take you out of your own life and involve you in someone else’s then My Struggle is literature…gripping" (John Carey Sunday Times)
"The most appealing in the series so far" (Daily Express)
"Irresistible" (Financial Times)
"If you have read the first one, you will need to read on – and you shouldn’t stop reading until the end" (Toby Lichtig Literary Review)
"So intense, so passionate and so compulsively readable" (Malcolm Forbes Glasgow Sunday Herald)
"An elegiac kind of comic novel, and it is pure Karl Ove Knausgaard" (Dwight Garner New York Times)
"Addictive" (Moira Hodgson Wall Street Journal (Europe))
"His work is transformative: to read it is to experience his life alongside him…. To read it is also to feel more human, more certain of what is means to be alive… It’s a brilliant depiction of an intense, philosophical and provocative young man" (Joanne Hayden Sunday Business Post)
"[Knausgaard] writes a clear prose that transforms ordinary events, detailing the span of his life with such directness that everything seems to be happening in real time" (Rodney Welch Washington Post)
The fourth part of a sensational literary cycle that has been hailed as ‘perhaps the most important literary enterprise of our times’ (Guardian)See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
But as in other volumes we flit about in time a lot, and in fact the middle third of the book is set two years earlier, when Karl Ove was sixteen. Same themes, though, interspersed with memories of childhood, more about his tyrannical father, plus a section from twenty years later, after his father has died, including comments from the adult Knausgaard, aged 40, who is writing the first of these books: all rather confusing, chronologically speaking, though it doesn't really disrupt the plot, because there isn't one.
So if these installments don't seem to be written in any particular order, does it matter which order we read them in? No, I don't think it does, though logically, it would be 3,4,1,2 (so far, anyway. I'm not sure what comes next).
The writing itself, as with the other volumes, varies from mediocre to occasional brilliance, but I suspect that some of the poor stuff is a fault of the translation, which includes a lot of rather quaint terms like `bits and bobs' and, even more frequently, `hither and thither', both totally out of character with the spirit of the book. Who talks like that nowadays? Not boys or young men, I don't think.Read more ›
The fourth instalment of Knaugaard's opus opens with him seeing his suitcases arrive in the northern Norwegian airport where he's travelled to become a teacher, when he's only eighteen and straight out of school himself. The suitcases then become a symbol of a link with his mother and his own self image. This is typical of Knausgaard's writing which both moves the story along and has moments of reflection.
I'm late to the party with this piece of fiction/autobiography, which has won widespread acclaim - Zadie Smith famously said that it was like 'crack' in terms of how hooked she was and how much she looked forward to the next instalment. This volume can be read without having read the first three but I will be going back to the first three having now become hooked myself. “I wasn’t much good at dealing with trivialities,” Knausgaard tells us at one point, but actually it's by exploring the details of his life and by being so honest about what it is to be eighteen and obsessed with sex and racked with 'doubt and torment' that makes his writing engaging. In terms of the quality of the writing itself Knausgaard is excellent at the interior monologue and the translation is very good to my mood, with no jarring notes.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Somebody else's life full of elements to ponder and enjoy (the writing style is fantastic: conversational, poetic, tight), and a catalyst to examine one's own perambulations on... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Mrs CRB
‘The life around me was not meaningful. I always longed to be away from it, and always had done. So the life I led was not my own. Read morePublished 4 months ago by reader 451
Another very fine book. The detailed reactions to everyday events are completely absorbing. Again, the natural elements are everywhere and all encompassing.Published 5 months ago by Robert L.
I never want this series to end. I am absorbed in Karl Ove's world and I am constantly staggered by his brutal and beautiful honesty. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Dr W
On par with the first book in the series, these two being my favourites so far. I like it when his dad features in the book, interesting character who's hard to work out.Published 8 months ago by T. Petcher
The extraordinary, profound yet mundane epic of Knausgaard's life continues with this exploration of his year teaching in northern Norway. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Amazon Customer