Winner of the Critics’ Award 2012
Ellinor is a communications consultant in her thirties. She can’t help but feel that her life is lacking meaningful intensity, that her life is a trivial contrast to her feelings of despair.
When a colleague suddenly leaves the firm Ellinor has to see through a project all by herself. By teaching postal workers in Postkom about media, influence and politics, Ellinor is supposed to better equip them in their opposition to the implementation of EU’s Postal Legislation. However, the question arises; who is teaching whom?
‘If you are looking for a novel about loneliness and the postal service, chose this one. ... It is practically impossible to decide where to begin when discussing Hjorth’s novels. They are immediate, but also stay with you, kicking around in your mind for a good while afterwards. This time, the story even manages to combine politics, the postal service and a lonely young woman. Can this really be of interest? Yes, it can, when Hjorth does it.’
‘... a fantastic book. There are few contemporary writers who explore loneliness with greater courage. Hurrah for Hjorth!’
‘I’ve rarely experienced such high from a novel as from Vigdis Hjorth’s new work about the European Union’s postal directive. ... One of her very best books. ... I’m almost tempted to shout Long live Vigdis Hjorth!’
‘Vigdis Hjorth's Leve posthornet! deserves applause for many things, not least for being something as improbable as a successful political novel about (hold tight now!) the postal directive. ... In every way, a very worthwhile novel by Vigdis Hjorth.’
‘Few writers can describe a woman near the edge as Hjorth can. ... It is almost the most engaging element in this book. And perhaps also the most original. Hjorth foregrounds politics, not the international kind, but the grey local authority dealings – and shows us its crucial role in our lives. This, in a novel whose apparently most straightforward formulations contain within them an ambiguity and depth that is uniquely Hjorth’s.’
‘Hidden inside the novel lies a small pearl of a story about a letter that only arrived at its destination because the postman truly committed himself to find the proper addressee. This makes Leve posthornet! into more than the narrative about a communication advisor and the postal directive. It also follows that Hjorth’s novel is not primarily about atomised contemporary individuals or nostalgia for letters written by hand, but about communication. If you decide to read one novel about the postal directive this year, it should be this one.’
‘An impressive journey of purification. ... In Leve posthornet! , Vigdis Hjorth immerses herself in existential seriousness. Her book is a loud scream; Hjorth has written a powerful novel about identity, authenticity and about making courageous choices ... her perceptions are acute and she writes very well.’
‘... when Hjorth takes on the problematic issues of politics and of life in general, with her familiar wit and existential courage, all you can do is give in.’
DAG OG TID
‘It is great feat to write something as rare as a political and personal novel without creating something that is both dull and too internalised. As always, she composes brilliantly precise sentences, with her utterly unique fingertip feel for flow and choice of words.’
‘A rare, realistic, not-post-modern box of candies: a story about politics, poetry and melancholy.’
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