Diverse and delightful… These sharp little essays, mostly only two pages long, capture the wonder of things with photographic immediacy… This is an inspiring, surprising collection.
Melissa Katsoulis, The Times
Knausgaard brilliantly conveys the sense you get, as a prospective parent, that the world is brand new… It’s all beautifully done.
William Leith, Evening Standard
In Autumn, a lyrical cabaret beside the grand opera of the My Struggle books, taboo memories and forbidden feelings disrupt the grown-up project of a compendium of fatherly wisdom... Autumn glows with a radiant attachment to 'the world, as it is'... From sunshine to head-lice, it celebrates the 'dizzying intensity of being'.
The first volume of the Seasons quartet quietly illuminates Knausgaard's profound gift for making the reader see the world in fresh and unpredictable ways.
Stuart Evers, The Observer
This book is full of wonders… Loose teeth, chewing gum, it all becomes noble, almost holy, under Knausgaard’s patient, admiring gaze. The world feels repainted.
Parul Sehgal, New York Times
Autumn… returns to the scintillating tangent that characterized the early volumes of My Struggle, when he still allowed his midlife self airtime. On each subject [Knausgaard] combines an almost comically microscopic focus with a stealthy flair for producing a bigger picture that is all the more arresting for arriving by surprise.
Anthony Cummins, Daily Telegraph
It is when elements of autobiography creep in that the book comes most alive, as when he writes about choosing his father’s wellington boots as a memento after his death.
Jake Kerridge, Daily Telegraph
Knausgaard writes about the textures of ordinariness with a microscopic focus that’s both wondrous and absurd… There are blissful glimpses of nature’s mystery and balance.
Henry Hitchings, Financial Times
Taking the old repetitive elements of life, Knausgaard’s detailed observations open our eyes to their unexpected yet remarkable qualities.
Kathleen McNamee, Irish Times
Knausgaard’s sentences, as long as waves, use the plainest, least literary language. You paddle out unsuspecting. This is easy, you think, striking out. But Knausgaard writes by undertow. Turn round and you are alone, far out in the drowning solitudes… It is truly hopeful and this, for Knausgaard, is a departure.
Laura Beatty, Oldie
Knausgaard is an acute, sometimes squirmingly honest analyst of domesticity and his relationship to his family.
Lisa Schwarzbaum, Newsweek Europe
Having given us his saga of experience, these are Knausgaard’s Songs of Innocence… The tension for the reader lies in watching the author navigate his way from the banal into the celestial otherness of the thing he is encountering… Knausgaard sees the world in a grain of sand and heaven in a wild flower.
Frances Wilson, Times Literary Supplement
In these secular meditations, Knausgaard scratches away at the ordinary to reach the sublime – finding what’s in the picture, and what’s hidden
Rodney Welch, Washington Post
The work itself varies between being excessively frustrating to the darkly funny, to the deeply cerebral. It’s remarkably tender, too: this entire project is to give his infant daughter, Anna, a guide to the world as her father sees it. It is, in essence, the world’s most literary toilet book
Caroline O'Donoghue, Irish Times
Superlative… On each subject he combines an almost comically microscopic focus with a stealthy flair for producing a bigger picture that is all the more arresting for arriving by surprise… It is the grown-up antithesis of the midlife crisis novel, comfortable in its own skin, autobiographical without being exhibitionist
Anthony Cummins, Irish Independent
For all his rapturous passages of ecstasy and agony, Karl Ove Knausgaard can also make you laugh… From sunshine to head-lice, it celebrates the “dizzying intensity of being”
August 28, 2017
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It was the worst of times, it was the worst of times.
Again. That’s the thing about things. They fall apart, always have, always will, it’s in their nature. So an old old man washes up on a shore. He looks like a punctured football with its stitching split, the leather kind that people kicked a hundred years ago. The sea’s been rough. It has taken the shirt off his back; naked as the day I was born are the words in the head he moves on its neck, but it hurts to. So try not to move the head. What’s this in his mouth, grit? it’s sand, it’s under his tongue, he can feel it, he can hear it grinding when his teeth move against each other, singing its sand-song: I’m ground so small, but in the end I’m all, I’m softer if I’m underneath you when you fall, in sun I glitter, wind heaps me over litter, put a message in a bottle, throw the bottle in the sea, the bottle’s made of me, I’m the hardest grain to harvest
the words for the song trickle away. He is tired. The sand in his mouth and his eyes is the last of the grains in the neck of the sandglass.Continue Reading