Story of a Marriage

by Geir Gulliksen

The unravelling of a marriage, told in very precise language, through moments both real and imagined. We see what Jon's marriage was like, and we see what he imagined to have happened with his wife and her lover. Despite being loaded with sex, it is told in a rather numb, chilling way, so it's perhaps fortunate that the book is quite short. I found it difficult, and yet utterly compelling, as a tale of the painful failure of love.


She ran to hold out, to keep the everyday despondency and despair at bay. And we undressed each other, touched each other, sucked and licked each other, in tender or violent sexual encounters to hold out, to get through the day's boredom and chaos and exhaustion. We had children together to hold out, and to make our world richer and less predictable. We went on holiday, celebrated birthdays and Christmas, lay close together at night, helped each other get up in the morning, all to make life into more than just a case of holding out.
Translated by Deborah Dawkin


Karl Ove Knausgaard by A Man in Love

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