Praised across Scandinavia as a "literary masterpiece," "spellbinding," and "magnificent," Unquiet reflects on six taped conversations the author had with her father at the very end of his life.
He is a renowned Swedish filmmaker and has a plan for everything. She is his daughter, the youngest of nine children. Every summer, since she was a little girl, she visits him at his beloved stony house surrounded by woods, poppies, and the Baltic sea. Now that she’s grown up and he’s in his late eighties, he envisions a book about old age. He worries that he’s losing his language, his memory, his mind. Growing old is hard work, he says. They will write it together. She will ask the questions. He will answer them. When she finally comes to the island, bringing her tape recorder with her, old age has caught up with him in ways neither could have foreseen.Unquiet follows the narrator as she unearths these taped conversations seven years later. Swept into memory, she reimagines the story of a father, a mother, and a girl—a child who can’t wait to grow up and parents who would rather be children. A heartbreaking and darkly funny depiction of the intricacies of family, Unquietis an elegy of memory and loss, identity and art, growing up and growing old. Linn Ullmann nimbly blends memoir and fiction in her most inventive novel yet, weaving a luminous meditation on language, mourning, and the many narratives that make up a life.
Linn Ullmann is the author of six award-winning, critically acclaimed novels, and her work has been published in more than thirty languages. Her previous novel, The Cold Song, was a New York Times Notable Book. Unquiet has received multiple awards and spent more than a year on top of the of Scandinavian bestseller lists. In 2017, Ullmann was awarded the Dobloug Prize from the Swedish Academy for her body of work. She lives in Oslo with her husband and daughter.
John Freeman was the editor of Granta until 2013. His books include How to Read a Novelist, Tales of Two Cities, Tales of Two Americas, and Maps, his debut collection of poems. He is executive editor at the Literary Hub and teaches at the New School and New York University. His work has appeared in the New Yorker and the Paris Review and has been translated into twenty languages