Boyhood Island (My Struggle: 3)

Boyhood Island (My Struggle: 3)

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by Karl Ove Knausgaard

A family of four--mother, father and two boys--move to the South Coast of Norway to a new house on a newly developed site. It is the early 1970s and the family's trajectory, upwardly mobile: the future seems limitless. In painstaking, sometimes self-lacerating detail, Knausgaard paints a world familiar to anyone who can recall the intensity and novelty of childhood experience, one in which children and adults lead parallel lives that never meet. Perhaps the most Proustian in the series, Book Three gives us Knausgaard's vivid, technicolor recollections of childhood, his emerging self-understanding, and the multilayered nature of time's passing, memory, and existence.

"Of course, I remember nothing from this time. It is completely impossible to identify with the infant my parents photographed; this is in fact so difficult it almost seems wrong to use the word 'I' when referring to it, lying in the baby bath, for instance, its skin unnaturally red, its arms and legs sprawling, and its face distorted in a scream no one remembers the reason for anymore ... Is that creature the same as the one sitting here in Malmö, writing this?"
--from Book Three of My Struggle