Brothers by Asko Sahlberg

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It's about the eternal dark comedy of humanity: people reduced to very simple circumstances, yet still finding complex ways to hate each other's guts.
-Guardian

Synopsis

A Shakespearean drama from icy Finland.


Finland, 1809. Henrik and Erik are brothers who fought on opposite sides in the war between Sweden and Russia. With peace declared, they both return to their snowed-in farm. But who is the master? Sexual tensions, old grudges, family secrets: all come to a head in this dark and gripping saga.


Why Peirene chose to publish this book: ‘This is a historical novel in miniature form. It deals in dark passions and delivers as many twists as a 500-page epic. And if that were not enough, each character speaks in a distinct voice and expresses a unique take on reality. I’m thrilled to be publishing a book that is as Finnish as a forest in winter - but that resembles a work from the American South: William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying.’ Meike Ziervogel


‘A brooding family drama that has something of the timeless quality of good soap opera.’ Nicholas Lezard, Guardian


‘Intensely visual . . . A brooding, atmospheric, Scandinavian late night movie.’ Brandon Robshaw, Independent on Sunday


‘A heart-stoppingly intense historical novel of grand scope.’ White Review


‘This short, intense novel examines concepts of home, inheritance and the connection between personal and international conflict.’ Max Liu, Times Literary Supplement


LONGLISTED FOR THE INTERNATIONAL IMPAC DUBLIN LITERARY AWARD 2014

 

About Asko Sahlberg

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Published February 15, 2012 by Peirene Press. 112 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Brothers
All: 2 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 0

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by JS Tennant on Apr 07 2012

This simple and affecting story set at the start of the 19th century is recounted from different perspectives by eight characters who inhabit or visit a tenanted farm in desolate western Finland.

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Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Nicholas Lezard on Mar 13 2012

It's about the eternal dark comedy of humanity: people reduced to very simple circumstances, yet still finding complex ways to hate each other's guts.

Read Full Review of Brothers | See more reviews from Guardian

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