In The Center (Senteret), Victoria Durnak explores major themes such as loneliness and post-partum depression, but with a pleasant narrative voice that is both inquisitive and smart at the same time. As in her previous novel, The Marketplace (Torget) from 2015, Durnak examines how meetings between people can take place in our day and age. While The Marketplace looked at the website finn.no, the action in Durnak's new novel takes place at the mall.
We get familiar with the book's protagonist: a young mother who has moved to Skien to get away – away from Oslo. Away from the man who does not want to be the father of her child. She spends her days at Herkules Shopping Center, visiting the shops and the people who work in them, watching them and trying to make contact with them – while at the same time trying to mother a daughter she still hasn't been able to name. According to the Naming Act, you have six months to name your child. You can do a lot in six months.
"The harsh reluctance and all the black humor that pours out of the eyes of this single mother, creates both identification and empathy. There us life in the land of the mall! The Center is Victoria Durnaks best book so far." NRK "Durnak reminds me about the American multi artist Miranda July, both in form and content. It is playful, sometimes silly, and at the same time dead serious - and it works well, especially in treating the subject in this book. (...) Along with being very funny, Durnak is also innovative, straight forward and light in her writing." AFTENPOSTEN
"Den tverre motviljen og all den svarte humoren som renner ut av øynene til alenemoren skaper både identifikasjon og medfølelse. Det er liv i kjøpesenterlandet! Senteret er Victoria Durnaks beste bok til nå."Knut Hoem, NRK