'He’s a kind of surrealistic writer... I think that’s serious literature' Haruki Murakami
‘An utterly hypnotic and utterly humane writer’ James Wood
'Without question Norway's bravest, most intelligent novelist' Per Petterson
Bjørn Hansen, a respectable town treasurer, has just turned fifty and is horrified by the thought that chance has ruled his life. Eighteen years ago he left his wife and their two-year-old son for his mistress, who persuaded him to start afresh in a small, provincial town and to dabble in amateur dramatics. But as time passes, this relationship begins to wilt and die as well.
After four years of living comfortably alone, Bjørn starts entertaining a dangerous course of action that will change his life beyond recognition. This urge to gamble with his comfortable existence becomes irresistible, taking Bjørn to Vilnius, Lithuania, with Dr Schiøtz his fellow conspirator, where he cannot tell whether he’s tangled up in a game or an absurd new reality.
Trond's friend Jon often appeared at his doorstep with an adventure in mind for the two of them. But this morning was different. What began as a joy ride on "borrowed" horses ends with Jon falling into a strange trance of grief. Trond soon learns what befell Jon earlier that day—an incident that marks the beginning of a series of vital losses for both boys.
Set in the easternmost region of Norway, Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson begins with an ending. Sixty-seven-year-old Trond has settled into a rustic cabin in an isolated area to live the rest of his life with a quiet deliberation. A meeting with his only neighbor, however, forces him to reflect on that fateful summer.
In The Wild Duck, the idealistic son of a corrupt merchant exposes his father's duplicity, but in the process destroys the very people he wishes to save. Convinced that reality is always superior to illusion, Gregers Werle forces his friends, the Ekdals, to face the truth about their lives. Unfortunately, the truth, involving scandal, illegitimacy, imprisonment, and madness, only serves to wound the Ekdals further. In the play, the wild duck is a symbol of this injured family, and perhaps of the loss of Ibsen's youthful idealism.
Moving and powerful, this thought-provoking tragedy shows clearly why Ibsen is regarded as one of the giants of modern theater.