A searingly honest, addictive and controversial read from the international sensation and bestseller, Karl Ove Knausgaard.
'It's unbelievable. I just read 200 pages of it and I need the next volume like crack. It's completely blown my mind' Zadie Smith via Twitter
Karl Ove Knausgaard writes with exhilarating honesty about his childhood and teenage years, his infatuation with rock music, his relationship with his loving yet almost invisible mother and his distant and unpredictable father, and his bewilderment and grief on his father's death. When Karl Ove becomes a father himself, he must balance the demands of caring for a young family with his determination to write great literature.
A Death in the Family is the first of the six books in the My Struggle cycle. In it Knausgaard has created a universal story which is gripping, hugely readable and written as if the author's very life were at stake.
Read Caroline Baum's Review
Karl Ove Knausgaard puts himself under the microscope with an honesty that will make you wince, laugh, cry. Unsparing, unflattering bare-bones prose - think of him as a male Scandinavian Helen Garner and you sort of get the idea.
Volume One is about his alcoholic father, Volume Two takes a scalpel to his marriage and own experience of fatherhood. His willingness to expose his vulnerabilities and flaws while examining what it means to be a man here and now has the grittiness of a black and white documentary as he tracks his interior malaise, guilt and inadequacy.
Despite what some may think, this is not an extended exercise in narcissism (there are four more volumes to be translated into English!) but a really remarkable project, a voyage into the interior full of stark and uncomfortable truths.
About the Author
Karl Ove Knausgaard's first novel, Out of the World, was the first ever debut novel to win The Norwegian Critics' Prize. His second novel, A Time to Every Purpose Under Heaven, was widely acclaimed. A Death in the Family was awarded the prestigious Brage Award, and is being heralded as a masterpiece wherever it appears.
"A masterpiece... Meticulously detailed, harrowing, oddly beautiful, its depiction of a family's disintegration is one of the most powerful pieces of writing I've read in years" Observer, Books of the Year "The best book I read this year...full of artistic, moral and technical daring" Guardian, Books of the Year "This suburban epic, electrifying in candour and eloquence, feels streets ahead of the comparable Jonathan Franzen" Independent, Books of the Year "Incredibly moving" Irish Times, Books of the Year "A scorchingly honest, unflinchingly frank, hyperreal memoir of the life of one man and his family" Guardian "This first instalment of an epic quest should restore jaded readers to life" Independent "As tense as any thriller yet without a jot of sensationalism" Metro "Readers will be captured by Karl Ove's narrative intensity" Times Literary Supplement "I think this is one of the best pieces of writing I've ever come across." Farm Lane Books (literary blogger)
Number Of Pages: 416
Published: 7th March 2013
Publisher: Vintage Publishing
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 19.7 x 12.8 x 2.8
Weight (kg): 0.37
Edition Number: 1