In writing this page, six volume highly personal memoir novel, he is forcing his internal and external, depth and surface selves to intermingle and become one. Since he feels trapped in this situation, to me it seems like a way for him to force himself out. Usually when we tell our own stories, we leave out all of the rough edges, and paint ourselves in a much better light.
Instead, he seems to be making an effort at self-mythologizing as objectively as he can. Worts and all. In conclusion, I loved this book. It wove together the disparate threads from the previous four books very tightly. It was also the first to move almost entirely in a linear fashion, which was a big departure from the others. Finishing it makes me want to go back and reread book two, which was previously my least favorite, but I think the additional insight and perspective gained from reading five would make it much more interesting.
The main narrative of book two chronologically lands right after the events of book five. I think that book five could be read before book two, and might even be best experienced in that order. Now begins the long wait for book six. View all 11 comments. If you've been avoiding the annual hype since but now for some weird reason think you're maybe KOK curious, these reviews of Books One , Two , Three , and Four will get you up to speed. Now that you're all caught up: Book Five begins soon after Book Four ends, with a nineteen-year-old Karl Ove triumphantly copulating in a tent.
Other love stories follow. Living can be so fantastic. So many titles are listed. At times, Karl Ove stands at the gates of hell, its mouth agape and ready to devour him. We know he will write two well-received novels, have a family he has four kids now , and write six volumes of autobiographical fiction that will rock Scandinavia before storming the UK and US.
I had spent ten years writing without achieving anything, and then all of a sudden, out of nowhere, it was just flowing. And what I wrote was of such quality, compared with what I had produced earlier, that I was surprised every evening when I read through what I had written the night before.
It was like having a head rush, or walking in your sleep, a state in which you are out of yourself, and what was curious about this particular experience was that it continued unabated. Once published, rave reviews appear on the cover of the newspaper, followed by interviews and a bit of celebrity. But the success comes at great personal cost. We know that the woman with whom he has three kids in Book Two is Linda, not Tonje, but the revelation of the devolution and end of his first marriage, particularly the time he spends in solitude on a small desolate island, is surprising and affecting.
Book Five is surely not the first extended stretch of prose to describe the development of a young male writer who plays music, drinks to excess, and experiences what seems like every calibration along the spectrum of love. But this iteration will be read and taken seriously. Bergen is forever wet in this, drenched by what seems like constant pouring rain.
Intertextuality may be this installment's most interesting aspect, how its curatorial content—the way Knausgaard names and discusses writers and novels, bands and albums—bonds with readers. This was a statement and a signal, a code for the initiated, of whom there were not many, and therefore particularly significant.
He read Sunde, he had to be a writer himself. But in general inclusion of this sort of thing unites more than it repels. Fans of Bjork, for example, will feel especially bonded with Karl Ove when he describes attending a party at her home in Iceland and vomiting in her toilet. The spiral jetty on the cover also works because Book Five concludes a long and winding journey through childhood and adolescence back to the territory of the first and second volumes.
This volume returns to the death of the father, covered in detail in the second half of volume one, yet really only touched on here. Read it in page sittings, immersed, now planning a trip to Bergen one day. Ending this volume means the arrival of Book Six, the final installment apparently featuring a page essay on Hitler, may be less than a year away. I know from interviews that one aspect of this project, only signaled by the semi-ironic title at this point, is that Karl Ove as a boy, teen, and a young man shared tendencies with the young, artistically ambitious Adolf Hitler.
I look forward to seeing how this ripples back through the previous volumes and reevaluating -- if not completely re-reading -- the complete project as soon as possible next year. View all 32 comments. Aug 15, Manny rated it really liked it Recommends it for: Well, if you've got this far Shelves: swedish-norwegian-and-danish , well-i-think-its-funny , too-sexy-for-maiden-aunts , life-is-proust. What's striking, given that the book is being sold as a novel, is how little people say about its qualities as a piece of literature. When Richard Powers, in Galatea 2.
Coetzee in Summertime , who describes reactions to "J. Coetzee's" death. He wonders what's next. Will we believe someone who says he's written a novel in his sleep? He's written a novel in a his sleep!
My Struggle: Book 5
He suffers innumerable setbacks, but doggedly continues. Over and over again, he shows how utterly indifferent he is to everyone around him, in particular the women. He milks his newly divorced mother for a large sum of money that she cannot afford, and then casually throws it away; he plagiarizes Petra, one of his fellow students at the Writer's Academy, and then refuses to admit it when she discovers what he's done; he gets drunk and has random sex with women he meets at nightclubs, then rings them the day after and pathetically begs them not to tell his girlfriend.
The most callous and shocking example is the way in which he appears to be revealing extremely private information about people close to him his second wife's suicide attempts, her mother's secret drinking. His justification is that he will some day turn all this experience into a great novel. Min kamp is that novel; the author has achieved the impressive technical feat of making it at same time compulsively readable and almost laughably bad. On the negative side, the constant listing of unnecessary details makes the book intolerably long - the original Norwegian edition, which I am reading, is about pages.
But the most ingenious aspect is the intertwining of themes taken from other great works of literature. By volume 3, I was already startled by the fact that "Karl Ove" appeared to be borrowing heavily from Proust the treatment of memory, the narrator's character, some of the sentence structures , Dostoyevsky the dreadful Karamazov-like father and Ursula K. Le Guin the evil spirit pursuing the narrator, which can only be himself. All these authors, and their books, are explicitly referenced and discussed at length.
Now, in volume 5, they are joined by Hamsun the first section is rather explicitly modeled on Hunger and, in an interesting pairing, on Bret Easton Ellis's Less Than Zero and then by Joyce and Dante; there is also a good deal of discussion of intertextuality, with references to Adorno and Kristeva. Volumes 3 to 5, one now realizes, are roughly patterned on Ulysses , with different sections written in different literary styles, while Volume 5 approximately follows the structure of The Divine Comedy , as "Karl Ove" progresses from the Hell of his year at the Writer's Academy to the Paradise of finally becoming a published author.
Any remaining doubts that I could have been fantasizing all this were dispelled on page , when God appears! To write a book which attempts to update and combine A la recherche du temps perdu , The Brothers Karamazov and A Wizard of Earthsea is already, to say the least, ambitious. To keep all these and then add Hamsun, Joyce and Dante is simply insane.
The immediate result of "Karl Ove's" literary success is the destruction of his relationship with his kind and loving wife Tonje. It seems entirely logical that the last volume will describe the creation of Min kamp , show the pain and harm it inflicts on "Karl Ove's" new family, and compare his megalomaniac schemes with those of Hitler. The bottom line: does it work? Once again, I find that the witty and clear-sighted author has anticipated me.
Ha ha ha! Den kan du ikke! I wrote that the novel was like a huge dick, impressive when you first saw it, but so big that there wasn't enough blood to lift it up and make it fully functional, it only became half erect. Tore screamed with laughter when he read it. You can't! Big and ambitious, absolutely, but too big and ambitious. I can't improve on his analysis. Chapeau , Karl Ove. Really, really excellent, and in many ways closes the circle of narrative, resolving threads that K. It most resembles book 4, in that it's relatively linear and contained by place instead of thematic, but it adds on a meta-literature element that made it particularly pleasurable.
The scenes in the MFA program are fascinating, should be eerily familiar to anyone who has ever taken a workshop. In some ways, this could have been the ending of the complete work, and the accomplishment of the Struggle series is now assured. The jumps in time do make some of the action here feel less WEIGHTED - it's always great but with all the years and girlfriends and faux pas's, there's a bit less heft - but I'm nitpicking.
I'd rank the books 2, 4, 1, 5, 6, 3, I think, though there is some wiggle room ni there From Bergen, Norway Before he makes it back to Bergen Karl Ove was hungry, - in need of food and money- and had to make some choices I related to this early part of the book. Karl Ove was aware of of "Tramp" style of temporary living The big difference between Karl Ove and "The Tramp", is he 'did' have a home to return to. Karl Ove had one hell of a miserable night - one I can relate to, as I, too, experienced a night like this once in Greece.
It was night Karl Ove had nothing but his zip up sleeping bag I didn't even have that As he slept outside with ice-cold rain. He was stiff as a board. A night to remember Moving on Once at The Writing Academy I liked his self-observation of ego. I learned about his family more during his visits home from school: his mom- grandmother- brother.
We follow his relationships with women - sexual journey - watch him grow - age up- fall in and out of love It's not true that a thing of beauty is exclusively beautiful or ugly things are only ugly. It's a lot more relative than that. Over the course of a year at the academy, he learned there was literature and real literature I'm not here to give those details away.
I have to say Here is the one question I would love another Knausgaard fan to answer for me How old was Karl Ove in Book 1? I was surprise to see him only 19 at the start of BOOK It just surprised me - that's all. Was he 12 -- in book 1? I'm sure one of my Goodreads friends will help me out View all 10 comments. Shelves: non-fiction , norway , translation , , memoir. Karl Ove Knausgaard - a painfully open book I had never heard of Knausgaard, a Norwegian author, best known for his 6-volume autobiography My Struggle.
When it was recommended to me I was a little curious as to whether listening I experienced this via audio format to After I was assured that it doesn't matter which book you read first, I set my need for reading 'in order' aside and started with this one, number 5. We begin when Karl Ove is 19, just about to start at the writing academy in Bergen. He is a young man, very inexperienced in life and love and the world, with a desire to write.
He's also filled with insecurities, which hinder him socially. He leans on alcohol to relieve uncomfortable feelings. I listened as he told us of the people he met, the books he read, the music he listened to, the beers the many beers he drank, the even more cigarettes he rolled then smoked. The anguish and hell of love and heartbreak.
The money he borrowed, the little jobs he took to pay bills. Conversations with his mother, time with his brother, complicated and painful emotions regarding his father. And the girls, oh the girls. It was strangely addictive, hearing of his life. Strange, because I wasn't really sure where it was going. Much of it seemed a little mundane - life is comprised of mundanities, punctuated by interesting moments here and there. Nevertheless, I was interested, for a couple reasons: 1 his absolute frankness and 2 his development as a writer.
Reason 2 was so interesting in its arc - he begins as a young man in a creative writing course, receiving positive and negative feedback from his classmates. Then he writes on his own, short stories that would take months to write and then would be thrown away in disgust, and self doubt. Later, he painfully takes time to go away and write, but produces very little.
And finally, almost magically, finds his stride and writes in dedicated rhythm, is appreciated, published, receives awards and recognition. Anyone who is interested in writing or a writer's process, will find this fascinating. Still, through all of this, he is a bit of a train wreck, personally. What a self destructive streak he has! But oh so human. And he doesn't try to make himself look better than he is, which makes me as a reader, sympathise and identify. Sometimes I felt I was trudging through too many mundanities. Sometimes I wondered why he would focus so heavily on certain things, such as yet another conversation in Cafe Opera, but then glide over something more important, such as an entire trip to Africa.
But for the most part, I was very much engaged. The writing is conversational, casual, yet captures this part of his life in a dignified way. Silly aside: Perhaps a new drinking game could be made with this book - let's see how many times Karl Ove or his friends say "fantastic" I'm a little perplexed by the photo on the cover of the Archipelago English edition.
Isn't that Robert Smithson's Spiral Jetty? I've been there.
My Struggle: Book Five by Karl Ove Knausgaard: | hyqujopodini.tk: Books
How does a giant earthwork, counterclockwise coil shooting into the Great Salt Lake fit into this novel? Beautiful, certainly, but odd. Ok, back to the novel. Back to K " A young artist is trying to find his voice, to mark his own path, to open his eyes, open his mouth, find that literary rhythm.
The amazing thing is after 5 books, I still care about Knausgaard, even after he has exposed, again and again, an often irritating and destructive side. I'm not sure if my affection is because he resembles in some ways my own brother, or because there is something warm and attractive about his strange sense of brutal honesty as brutally honest as a fictional biography can get.
I'm not sure being his brother or mother would be a job I'd volunteer for. He is fairly aware of his indulgent side, but this is one guy you might want to remove sharp items from once he starts to drink. In the novel I was most interested in his relationship with family and his relationship with women oh, and the scenes at the clinic are amazingly strange. I think the technique he uses to explore these relationships can be described as an inversion.
What is inside of Knausgaard gets put outside. Things most rational and sane people would not expose to the world, he exposes. At the same time he chews inwardly on the outside. He brings in as almost an emotional experience the water, the weather, the cold, the ground, birds, geography. Knausgaard describes this fascination after he writes a poem: Two leather chairs in the wind noise from a town You have left. The girl disappears into the girl. He follows the poem with a line that perhaps hints at some of his larger themes, "ever since I was small I had been fascinated by the relationship between the inside and the outside, when what was supposed to be inside was outside, and vice versa.
He literally struggles with friends and family and other writers to speak. He struggles to write. He wants to write literature buy seems destined to write nonfiction. Insecurities, distractions, women, school, and his own competitiveness seem to constantly pull at his desire to be a writer. He seems trapped in the Hamlet paralysis. Caught between to be or not to be. Between the sky and the not sky. And like a levy breaking, one day it opens up. He finds his voice. He is able to catch the fire, to hold the flame.
In this way his writing is a pharmakon a means of producing something. In this way, writing for Knausgaard is both a cure and a poison, a blessing and a curse. Like his constant struggle with drinking too much alcohol -- which allows him to speak but also inspires him to commit horrible and often destructive acts, Knausgaard seems through-out most of the novel to be at the cliff-edge of writing.
He is afraid at both his need for the drug and afraid of what will be released when he finds his voice and lets go. But, this wouldn't be a novel about the development of a writer, if he didn't, in the end, jump. A very strong five stars to this one. How I loved it. I want to, as always, write that it doesn't matter in which order you read the books in this series. They are made to be read independently from each other, the books are not in chronological order but by different parts of Karl Ove's life, and different overarching themes. I read them out of order , started with part one and read until part four, then six and jumped back to this one, part five.
It makes no difference in which order you read, since all the books connect in some ways, and you get to know Karl Ove more and more as you do read. It's all about Karl Ove moving to north Norway after being done with school to teach at the same time he's trying to write and find his voice. Stop when you get to Karl Ove's father dying and go back to read part one.
The first part is all about Karl Ove's relationship with his father and dealing with his death. How he handles his relationships and media. Friends and family saying that he got things wrong and what to sue him if he publishes. How he didn't know what he started when he started to write and this phenomena that these books and his life has become. But as I wrote, you can read this in any other you like. But let's get back to this part. Why is this my favorite book in the series?
Well I hate to pick favorites but this just was more than amazing. I enjoyed, loved the other parts too. Which should be obvious now that I read all of the pages the total number of pages in the translation I read else I wouldn't gotten past passed part one. But I'm picking favorites, so this is my absolute favorite closely followed by part two.
Karl Ove is 19 and moves to Bergen to start Skrivarakademin , a writing school for a year. He's the youngest student in the class and he starts out really ambitious. He moved away from home, has his own apartment and lives in a new town. He hangs out with his older brother Yngve, who takes him out to meet his friends and get drunk together.
Their sibling relationship change pretty much during the years when this book set. Karl Ove falls in love. Gets drunk. Is poor, because he spends all the money he gets fast. He writes and tries to write. When his classmates start to criticizes his work, he tries to shrug it off but inside he's hurting. He stops showing up at class. He's trying constantly to write but he's never happy with anything. At times he doesn't write at all. He does random jobs. Starts to study literature at the university. Writes reviews for books in some magazines. Works with mentally ill people.
Does military service. Works for a radio station. Messes up and breaks up.
- After soaring for 5 volumes, Knausgaard brings My Struggle in for a rough landing.
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Falls in love again. Gets married. And so much more. As he drinks, he blackouts. Loses time. Makes stupid mistakes. Is unfaithful.
Regrets everything as soon as he wakes up the next day. If he remembers it. He claims to be two different people - one when he's sober and one when he's drunk. Drunk Karl Ove can't stop drinking, gets into trouble and talks to everyone.
Sober Karl Ove is fine with spending time alone, doesn't need to talk and wants to focus on his writing. Yngve worries about Karl Ove's drinking several times throughout the book and tells him he has to stop. Karl Ove can't just have one drink, he always has to have plenty. There are moments when he's drinking or making bad choices, where I just want to yell at him.
What are you doing Karl Ove?! Why did you do that?! What where you thinking?! Get your act together! At the same time I understand him. He is about my age as this book is set, going through a lot of things in life, and even though him and I have experienced our early twenties totally different - I can still understand him. His lack of self confidence, his fears and all that he want to block out.
My Struggle: Book Five
His way to in a way or another torture himself, if that is by thinking himself down or physically harming himself. All the parts of this series has made me love and hate Karl Ove, and that why I have kept on reading to the very end. He's not a good person at times, sometimes often, and he writes it all down. I sigh at him while reading. Karl Ove all will get better, I want to say.
You have no idea what happiness you will experience later in your life. You have no idea how many people will pick your book up and read them. And love them as much as I have. Also hate them, but don't bother with those. Part five, started out slow but as soon as I got into it I just didn't want to put it down. I knew what would happen in some parts, because of reading the other parts, but it didn't feel like I've been spoiled in any way. I read and waited patience until he went to Iceland. Oh Tonje. I feel for you. But what a woman you are. What I feel that Karl Ove does perfectly in this is to show how much love there is between him and the people around him.
Mostly between him and Yngve. As I read, it's very clear to me that that is a loving relationship. Even if there has been some hard turns in their relationship, here and there. Also Tonje. I know that Karl Ove messes things up, is unavailable for her and unfaithful, and that she just has the most patience with him.
What I read though is also the love he has for her. His relationship with Espen and Tore also. His jealousy as they get published before him, being younger than he is, but also his support and them supporting him. How come I read part five last? Well I just couldn't handle this series to end and I knew that I would cry my eyes out as I reached the last sentence in part six.
Which I also surely did. So I saved part five for last so that that last sentence wasn't the last in the series for me. Also saving it until I needed it, which was recently and knowing I would really enjoy it and even love it. I loved it so much. I don't agree but I understand them. The books in this series aren't exactly page turners. There are some parts in each book that drag on and are a bit too long, but they should be there.
Life isn't always action packed. Sometimes it's about having coffee and a cigarette and reflect upon life. That's how I see it. Sometimes I want to close my eyes and not read on what will happen next. I want to yell at him. I have cried several times while reading this book and the others in the series. I have sighed. I have felt so much while reading this. Karl Ove, thanks for the struggle. I have enjoyed myself so much while reading.
I'm sorry for thinking your writing wasn't for me because your series is my favorite series of all time and I doubt that any other series will ever top it. I know I will return to your books in the years to come. I know I will dog ear more pages, underline sentences and parts I love. I know I will reread a couple of pages here and there and just feel happy and sad at the same time as I re-experience them. Thank you Karl Ove. You have been a big part of my reading life the last year and a half. I have recommended, and still recommend anyone who will listen to me, to pick up your books.
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I wish there was more and I will read what you have written before and what you will write in the future with pleasure. I'm so happy to have these books in my life. View all 4 comments. Here we go again! I started the fifth book right on schedule this time, but had to pay almost the same price for the Kindle version as for the hardcover. With my luck the paperback will come out any day now, and the price for the Kindle will drop too. It took several hours, and a call back to Norway, to convince the officials to let the family in. Karl Ove recites the entire poem Todesfuge by Paul Celan to his girlfriend, instead of actually talking with her.
A peculiar guy at In my German edition of the book the original poem is printed, of course. I wonder how the Norwegian version sounds to Norwegian ears? This poem really sounds like the basis on which Celan has build his fugue. But apparently keeping the two works speperated would have been a violation of the holy rules and regulations of GR and who am I to argue that.
He he he. This narrative seems like an endless stream and it suits the mood in Bergen nicely where all it ever does is rain, it seems. He studies literature. But talking about is not his main focus. Only sometimes, for brief moments, when the cloud cover ruptures, he mentions his own writing. What seems more important is telling us how often and how hard he gets drunk. His name is not in any book yet, not as the author anyway.
Just a cover. Quite obscure. Far from it. Working almost all day aside from chauffeuring his kids, he could write 20 pages in a day. The page section on his first days with his wife was written in a hour spurt. He wrote the page fifth book in eight weeks. The sixth book has a page essay on Hitler's early life and autobiography.
He wanted "unsparing honesty" in the last book "to save the project", and so discarded pages, delayed the book, and wrote about the fallout from the publication of the previous five volumes, including a breakdown suffered by his wife  during which she was hospitalized. Though he wrote at the end of his series that he is finished with writing, he plans to write a new and fantastical novel not about his life, and influenced by Jorge Luis Borges and Italo Calvino. Though the book's protagonist is conflicted between his commonplace needs and his longing to make monumental art, the novels show that the main functions of his life are not the latter art work but the former family life.
The series is centered around family and relationships, not the writer's relationship with his work. The books have different titles depending on country and translation. In the native Norwegian they are simply known as Min kamp 1 , Min kamp 2 , etc.. The title of the series, of both the English translation and the original Norwegian, is a translation of "Mein Kampf" and is thus a clear reference to Hitler.
The title of the first volume of the German translation is Sterben , which means "to die" or "dying", the second volume Lieben , meaning "to love" and so on. At the insistence of the publisher, the work was not published as Mein Kampf in Germany. I know it's going to hurt, and I will drive you to the hospital afterwards. But I'm going to do it anyway. A theatrical adaptation of My Struggle into a Swedish language play entitled "Min Kamp" was premiered in Stockholm at Kulturhuset Stadsteatern on 29th August , adapted for the stage and directed by Ole Anders Tandberg. The play was premiered in Kristiansand on 2 September in Norwegian language  and performed at the Oslo Nye Centralteatret from 11 October running until 29 October From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
The difficult thing for me is that I want basically to be a good man. That's what I want to be. In this project, I wasn't. It is unmoral, in a way. The New Republic. Archived from the original on April 13, Retrieved April 13, The New Yorker. Retrieved March 8, The Guardian.