Kristin Lavransdatter by Sigrid Undset
(Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition)

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The most moving and illuminating image I know of a woman's life from birth to death, embedded in the turmoil of a patriarchal world as it rages through the 14th century.


"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, edited by William Rose and J. Isaacs

"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 Dostoievsky's Brothers Karamazov. It is also very probably the noblest work of fiction ever to have been inspired by the Catholic art of life." -- Commonweal

"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

"This trilogy is 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."

-- Ruth Suckow in the Des Moines Register

About Sigrid Undset

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Sigrid Undset is a major figure in early twentieth-century literature. A Norwegian born in Denmark in 1881, she worked with the Norwegian underground during the Second World War, fled to Sweden in 1940, and later came to the United States. She is the author of many works of fiction as well as several books for young readers and a number of nonfiction titles. Her novels encompass a variety of settings and time periods, ranging from medieval romances such as the Kristin Lavransdatter trilogy—generally considered to be her masterwork—and The Master of Hestviken tetralogy to modern novels such as The Winding Road, Ida Elisabeth, and The Faithful Wife. She was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1928. Sigrid Undset died in 1949.
Published September 27, 2005 by Penguin Classics. 1168 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, History, Romance, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Kristin Lavransdatter
All: 3 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 0


Reviewed by Andre Brink on Sep 11 2008

The most moving and illuminating image I know of a woman's life from birth to death, embedded in the turmoil of a patriarchal world as it rages through the 14th century.

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Washington Independent Review of Books

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Reviewed by Patricia Bochi on Feb 13 2013

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 enthrall.”

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The New Yorker

Above average
Reviewed by Macy Halford on Sep 23 2010

The book is remarkable for Undset’s work as an historian; for her prose, which (in Tina Nunnally’s translation) is magnificently sharp; and for her ability to draw you into the life of her headstrong heroine.

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