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Olav Audunssøn: IV. Winter

Olav Audunssøn: IV. Winter

Current price: $17.95
Publication Date: October 24th, 2023
Publisher:
Univ Of Minnesota Press
ISBN:
9781517915414
Pages:
352
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Description

The fourth and final volume in the Nobel Prize–winning writer’s epic of one man’s fateful life in medieval Norway

 

Set in thirteenth-century Norway, a land racked by political turmoil, bloody family vendettas, and rising tensions between secular powers and an ascendant church, Sigrid Undset’s spellbinding masterpiece now follows the fortunes of Olav Audunssøn to the final, dramatic chapter of his life as it unfolds in Winter, the last volume of the tetralogy. When the orphaned Olav and his foster sister Ingunn became betrothed in their youth, a chain of events was set in motion that eventually led to violence, banishment, and a family separation lasting years. The consequences fracture their marriage and threaten the lineage for generations. Now, at the end of his life, Olav continues to grapple with the guilt of his sins as he watches his children, especially Eirik, make disastrous choices and struggle to find their rightful place in a family haunted by the past.

 

With its precise details and sweeping vision, Olav Audunssøn summons a powerful picture of Northern life in medieval times, as noted by the Swedish Academy in awarding Undset the Nobel Prize in 1928. Conveying both the intimate drama and the epic proportions of Olav’s story at its conclusion, Winter is a moving and masterly recreation of a vanished world tainted by bloodshed and haunted by sin and retribution—yet one that might still offer a chance for redemption. 

 

As with Kristin Lavransdatter, her earlier medieval epic, Sigrid Undset wrote Olav Audunssøn after immersive research in the legal, religious, and historical writings of the time to create an astoundingly authentic and compelling portrait of Norwegian life in the Middle Ages. And as in her translation of Kristin Lavransdatter, Tiina Nunnally does full justice to Undset’s natural, fluid prose—in a style by turns plainspoken and delicately lyrical—to convey the natural world, the complex culture, and the fraught emotional territory against which Olav’s story inexorably unfolds.

About the Author

Sigrid Undset (1882–1949) was a prolific Norwegian writer and winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature. From 1940 to 1945, she lived in the United States in exile during the German occupation of Norway. She is best known for her epic medieval trilogy Kristin Lavransdatter and the tetralogy Olav Audunssøn. Her novel Marta Oulie is also published in translation by the University of Minnesota Press.

Tiina Nunnally is the award-winning translator of many works of Scandinavian literature, including Sigrid Undset’s Kristin Lavransdatter, which was awarded the PEN/Book-of-the-Month Club translation prize. She has translated books by Tove Ditlevsen, Ola Larsmo, Vidar Sundstøl, and Per Olov Enquist, as well as The Complete and Original Norwegian Folktales of Asbjørnsen and Moe (Minnesota, 2019).

Praise for Olav Audunssøn: IV. Winter

"An enjoyable read if you are looking for medieval period historical fiction. The characters and story are memorable and the prose easy reading and yet descriptive."—Nicki Markus