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Laxness

Book Tips - Halldór Laxness

The Nobel Prize in Literature 1955 was awarded to Halldór Laxness "for his vivid epic power which has renewed the great narrative art of Iceland".

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Iceland's Bell (Íslandsklukkan)

This is a historical novel of epic proportions.
/Tomislav, Serbia & Montenegro

Independent People (Sjálfsætt fólk)

This book is a masterpiece, definitely. It was like a whole new world for me. The first Icelandic book I've read is Heaven and Hell, and I enjoyed it. But this one was far way better, better than most of the books I've ever read. From the very first page, I entered a world of trolls and elves, of cold and vast landscapes, of people who fight with all their forces to be free and independent. This book was like a puzzle. I was constantly asking myself: What lies beneath this strong mind and body, beneath this face that never smiled and that mouth that never pronounced a compassionate and kind word? After every word I read I tried to look into the labyrinth of this human soul, the soul of Bjartur, the soul he doesn't even believe to exist. The only bridge between his soul and mine, his and his daughter's, Asta Sollilja, was poetry. This is a book about a man who had one single wish in his life: to be independent, and for a reader who wants to discover its meaning by another point of view, that of a man living in a distant country and a distant time. At the end, everything is relative.
/Tea, Albania
The man's struggle for it's independence and it's obstination towards it.
/Sara Peres, Portugal
A grand epic about people's lives embedded in the history of Iceland. A brave and gripping tale about loss, preseverence. Never before has an author described in such beautiful detail the hardships of people. A book everyone should have read.
/Leo, Netherlands
Lyrical epic of a person who is almost too independent for his own good. The hardships endured by early 20th century Icelanders are told with almost breathtaking beauty. It gives a view into a world and way of life that is completely different from my own.
/Jonathan Leff, United States

The Fish Can Sing (Brekkukotsannáll)

His narrative is such that he tells us a wealth of life's good sense without ever stating the obvious - he is indeed a genius and certainly deserved the prize.
/Emma Kriel, South Africa

Under the Glacier (Kristnihald undir Jökli)

It is a lively masterpiece of modern fiction.
/Lindsey, United States

World Light (Heimsljós)

The writing is so wonderful. And it concerns the difficulty of a writer's life - or the resistance of the world to a writer.
/Richard Koontz, United States
'World Light' simply blew me away. I was preparing a trip to Iceland and I decided to read an Icelandic novel. I think no other novel could have made me more eager to discover further the Icelandic culture. Laxness goes straight to the heart of human nature and, at the same time, paints a beautiful picture of an island on which people's lives were never quite easy. If you have an artistic side, or even only a dream of any kind, the character of Olafur Karason will mean the world to you although reading the book, and even afterwards. It touched me so much, I have been learning Icelandic for the past two months and, one day, maybe I can read Laxness' original words!
/Chloe St Jacques, Canada
'World Light' tells a story of a young man who wants to be a poet but is not very good at it. However he does not have much of a chance, and his short life is very sad. This affects me very strongly for some reason, that someone wants something very badly but cannot get it, and that each of his attempts is thwarted by the smallmindedness of other people. My friends think this book is depressing but I do not. I think it is very well written and worth reading, especially for other young people.
/Elizabeth, United States
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MLA style: "Book Tips - Visitors Recommend". Nobelprize.org. Nobel Media AB 2014. Web. 24 Aug 2016. <http://www.nobelprize.org/educational/literature/books/comments.php?id=626&nextid=832&name=Laxness+Halld%F3r+Kiljan>

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