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Moonstone: The Boy Who Never Was

Winner of the Swedish Academy's Nordic Prize 2023

«I always enjoy Sjón's books, but Moonstone: The Boy Who Never Was is an experience like no other. The author confronts his own limits, and raises the bar for the reader too. His portrayal of Reykjavik in 1918 is magical. The scene where a movie theatre falls silent, because all the musicians have succumbed to an outbreak of Spanish flu, is marvellous and very amusing. The novel has given me my best reading experience this year.»

Eka Kurniawan, Best Books of 2016, Financial Times

Reykjavik, 1918. The eruptions of the Katla volcano darken the sky night and day. Yet despite the natural disaster, the shortage of coal and the Great War still raging in the outside world, life in the small capital goes on as always. Les mer

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Reykjavik, 1918. The eruptions of the Katla volcano darken the sky night and day. Yet despite the natural disaster, the shortage of coal and the Great War still raging in the outside world, life in the small capital goes on as always. Sixteen-year-old Mani Steinn lives for the movies. Awake, he lives on the fringes of society. Asleep, he dreams in pictures, the threads of his own life weaving through the tapestry of the films he loves. When the Spanish flu epidemic comes ashore, killing hundreds of townspeople and forcing thousands to their sick beds, the shadows that linger at the edges of existence grow darker and Mani is forced to re-evaluate both the society around him and his role in it. Evoking the moment when Iceland's saga culture met the new narrative form of the cinema and when the isolated island became swept up in global events, this is the story of a misfit transformed by his experiences in a world where life and death, reality and imagination, secrets and revelations jostle for dominance.

Detaljer

Forlag
Sceptre
Innbinding
Paperback
Språk
Engelsk
Sider
160
ISBN
9781473613157
Utgivelsesår
2017
Format
20 x 13 cm

Om forfatteren

Born in Reykjavík in 1962, Sjón is the author of the novels The Blue Fox, The Whispering Muse, From the Mouth of the Whale, Moonstone and CoDex 1962, for which he has won several awards including the Nordic Council's Literature Prize and the Icelandic Literary Prize. He has also been shortlisted for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award and the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize, and his work has been translated into thirty-five languages.

In addition, Sjón has written nine poetry collections as well as four opera librettos and lyrics for various artists. He lives in Reykjavík, Iceland.

Victoria Cribb has translated over thirty-five books by Icelandic authors. Her translations of Moonstone and CoDex 1962 were both longlisted for the PEN America Translation Prize and in 2017 she received the Ordstír honorary translation award for services to Icelandic literature.

Anmeldelser

«I always enjoy Sjón's books, but Moonstone: The Boy Who Never Was is an experience like no other. The author confronts his own limits, and raises the bar for the reader too. His portrayal of Reykjavik in 1918 is magical. The scene where a movie theatre falls silent, because all the musicians have succumbed to an outbreak of Spanish flu, is marvellous and very amusing. The novel has given me my best reading experience this year.»

Eka Kurniawan, Best Books of 2016, Financial Times

«Tender, elegiac and occasionally surreal»

Angel Gurria-Quintana, Financial Times, Summer Books

«Sjón's prose is never histrionic or overwrought, balancing rage and hallucination . . . with a gentleness of spirit, an affection for precision and the small scale. The result is sure to delight his fans and convert many new ones.»

Hari Kunzru, Guardian

«Moonstone is Sjón's slim, simmering masterpiece. Vibrant and visceral, briskly paced but meditative, unsettling yet droll and flecked with beauty, it is a pitch-perfect study of transgression, survival and love.»

David Mitchell

«A magical book, the work of a great illusionist. You see the historical moment unfurl, luminous with desire and imagination and the flames of an erupting volcano, dark with repression, disease and death. You see it all through the poetic, poignant images of Máni Steinn's story. And then in a final flourish you see it all vanish in a way that makes it unforgettable.»

Adam Foulds

«Sjòn's Moonstone is a marvel of a novel, queer in every sense of the word - an impeccable little gem»

Rabih Alameddine

«When the meaning of the book's subtitle is finally explained, the effect is powerful. MOONSTONE is about human decency, courage and respect for the individual. It is a small book with a large heart.»

Chris Power, New Statesman

«Moonstone takes its place among the great works of literature that have documented life during the Spanish-flu epi­demic . . . Sjón is one of our era's great writers. Like Ovid, Kafka, and Bulgakov, he is fascinated by metamorphosis and, from apparently limitless resources of the imagination, can convey what it must feel like.»

Charles Baxter, The Nation

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