Reintroducing a forgotten masterpiece of Norwegian literature
Elling grows up in a poor fishing village at the coast of Trøndelag. He is an artistic, headstrong child who stands out amongst the islanders. Alli worries about her son and his differentness and tries to protect him from his surroundings. But perhaps in doing so she does him more harm than good.
The New York Times Book Review critic Alma Luise Olson wrote “Just in its brevity and firm grasp of psychology, the short novel has excruciating strength”, while NY Times’ Alfred Kazin characterized Haalke as “a sensitive and thoughtful writer” and praised her “admirable taste” and “exceptionally good passages of insights and sympathy”.
The dense and intense story of Elling and Alli will make as deep an impact on 2020 readers as it did in 1935. The upcoming edition will have a foreword by author Monica Isakstuen.