Kristin Lavransdatter

Kristin Lavransdatter : Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition

4.29 (9,899 ratings by Goodreads)
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'[Sigrid Undset] should be the next Elena Ferrante' -Slate

The Nobel Prize-winning masterpiece by Norway's literary master

Kristin Lavransdatter is the epic story of one woman's life in fourteenth-century Norway, from childhood to death. Sensitive and rebellious Kristin is sent to a convent as a girl, where she meets the charming but irresponsible Erlend. Defying her parents' wishes to pursue her own desires, she marries and raises seven sons. However, her husband's political ambitions threaten catastrophe for the family, and the couple become increasingly estranged as the world around them tumbles into uncertainty.

With its captivating heroine and emotional potency, Kristin Lavransdatter is the masterwork of Norway's most beloved author and, in Nunnally's exquisite translation, a story that continues to enthral.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 1168 pages
  • 153 x 234 x 40mm | 700g
  • Penguin Classics
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0143039164
  • 9780143039167
  • 30,911

Review quote

[Sigrid Undset] should be the next Elena Ferrante . . . If HBO is looking for its next miniseries, it should give Kristin Lavransdatter the proper adaptation it deserves. This trilogy includes illicit sex, affairs, a church fire, an attempted rape, ocean voyages, rebellious virgins cooped up in a convent, predatory priests, an attempted human sacrifice, floods, fights, murders, violent suicide, a gay king, drunken revelry, the Bubonic Plague, deathbed confessions, and sex that makes its heroine ache 'with astonishment - that this was the iniquity that all the songs were about' -- Ruth Graham * Slate * Tiina Nunnally's magnificent version revitalised Undset's epic in English: each page glows and sparkles like the landscapes she so wonderfully evokes -- Boyd Tonkin * The 100 Best Novels in Translation * [My favourite fictional hero or heroine is] probably Sigrid Undset's strong-willed, sensual, self-destructive and ultimately rock-solid Kristin Lavransdatter. . . . Right away one somehow identifies with this daughter of medieval Norway; soon one compassionates her in her sufferings. . . . Like Murasaki and Dos Passos, Undset tells the story of a whole life -- William T. Vollman * The New York Times Book Review * At certain points, Kristin Lavransdatter felt more real than the life I was living -- Lucia Tang * Electric Lit * The Nunnally translation is excellent - straightforward but also evocative, lyrical enough in places, but not, like earlier translations, overly romantic or archaic.... Every detail of Kristin Lavransdatter is significant, because the author knows what every detail means and how they all fit together. This makes the novel a rich and satisfying read -- Jane Smiley We consider it the best book our judges have ever selected and it has been better received by our subscribers than any other book * Book-of-the-Month Club * The finest historical novel our 20th century has yet produced; indeed it dwarfs most of the fiction of any kind that Europe has produced in the last twenty years * Contemporary Movements in European Literature * As a novel it must be ranked with the greatest the world knows today * Montreal Star * Sigrid Undset's trilogy embodies more of life, seen understandingly and seriously . . . than any novel since Dostoevsky's Brothers Karamazov * Commonweal * The first great story founded upon the normal events of a normal woman's existence. It is as great and as rich, as simple and as profound, as such a story should be * Des Moines Register * No other novelist, past or present, has bodied forth the medieval world with such richness and fullness of indisputable genius. . . . One of the finest minds in European literature * New York Herald Tribune * A master . . . writing in a prose as vigorous, articulate and naturalistic as the novel it re-creates, Tiina Nunnally brilliantly captures a world both remote and strangely familiar -- Judges' citation, PEN/Book-of-the-Month Club Translation Prize
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About Sigrid Undset

Sigrid Undset (Author)
Sigrid Undset (1882-1949) was a Norwegian-Danish novelist and the winner of the 1928 Nobel Prize for Literature. Her best-known work, the Kristin Lavransdatter trilogy, is considered to be one of the great achievements of twentieth-century European literature.

Tiina Nunnally (Translator)
Tiina Nunnally is an award-winning translator (from Danish, Norwegian and Swedish) and novelist. She was awarded the prestigious PEN Translation Prize in 2001 for her translation of the third volume of Sigrid Undset's Kristin Lavransdatter, and her translations of Hans Christian Andersen and Tove Ditlevsen for Penguin Classics have been widely praised.
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Rating details

9,899 ratings
4.29 out of 5 stars
5 53% (5,221)
4 30% (2,924)
3 13% (1,274)
2 4% (356)
1 1% (124)
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