Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Out Stealing Horses, mini review

Out Stealing Horses by Per Petterson...no spoilers, I promise!

I just finished this hours ago, and it is something to be in awe of. I highly recommend this book, if, like me, you like your space and solitude and can relate to someone seeking actively seeking it.

The main character, Trond, is in his 60's, reliving his teenage experiences with his Dad. So it hops back and forth in time, seamlessly, and shows this incredible bond between father and son. The bond is so strong that events that come along are not easily understood at first. They don't always fit in with the first perception of the close familial bond.

The location, Norway, is fascinating: Petterson spends much time discussing the geography, botany, and farm activities of Norway. The weather, with the short days and long nights then is shifted to long days with short nights, and this seasonal shift seems to be reflected in the character's choices.

I don't want to say much else, as to ruin it for someone else, but do curl up with this on a quiet afternoon, with a pot of hot coffee. Have your dog at your feet and a blanket to curl up with, as inevitably you'll soon feel chilly.

One thing that astounded me again, in reading this, has been my noticing of late that many books involving older people seem to have all of them reliving their childhood moments, specifically their teen years. I don't know why I hadn't noticed that before. Maybe it wasn't my time to notice those things. It made me wonder, does my dad, at roughly the same age, think about his father in most waking moments? I think I should ask. Because in my life it seems I'm so occupied with just the here and now, I don't have time to look back, and can't really think of a single teenage experience significant enough to ponder in the future.

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