Lucky Per read-along this May

C0353C75-F9E0-47D7-B1C4-083D27F8D434This painting by Paul Gustave Fischer gives an indication of Denmark about one hundred years ago, and I like the mood he creates in this winter scene. But I am even better able to create an image in my mind when I read.

As I read of Peter Andreas sneaking out of his house at fourteen years of age to go sledding in the moonlight, I immediately sensed the joy he must have experienced until he was caught by the night watchman. Undeterred, he tells a bald-faced lie about there being a knife fight at the top of the hill, and saying he will fetch the doctor he makes a quick escape. (How is that some people are able to lie so quickly, so effectively, and others, when caught, simply stammer or look blank?)

At this point in my reading, he has left his father’s home, determined to succeed in his lofty engineering plan (involving fjord realignment) which has already been proved faulty by his professor. He is borrowing money for suits he cannot afford, and sleeping with women he does not love. I am mesmerized by this novel, which “propelled its author (Henrik Pontoppidian) to a 1917 Nobel Prize for Literature.” (Introduction in the Everyman’s Library edition.) I am reading it, at the suggestion of Dorian, along with several others. You can find comments and observations on Twitter at #LuckyPer2019, and of course you are welcome to join in as we read this month of May.

13 thoughts on “Lucky Per read-along this May”

  1. Unfortunately I caught a flu-like virus; at least this meant bed rest so I was able to finish Lucky Per – but my head is in no fit state to post on it yet. The 2018 film by Bille August, A Fortunate Man, dubbed into English, is on Netflix and fairly faithful to the text. Obviously it omits a lot, and there are changes – including the ending

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    1. You’ve already finished! I’m enjoying it and reading steadily on, but I am only about 150 pages in. Films so often disappoint me when compared to the novel, but I may see if I can locate the one of which you speak. Don’t cross your fingers when it comes to our library! 😉 I will look forward to discussing this with you when I am done.

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    1. I wasn’t familiar with Henrik Pontoppidian, either, which is part of why read-alongs are so fun! I decided to join after reading that Dorian was hosting a read-along, and after reading such good things about this Danish masterpiece. Just as when I joined you for a Trollope read, in the final hour!, I am really enjoying this. I think you would like it, too.

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  2. What a pretty image. I’m looking forward to your final review of this book. I first heard about it from a literary newsletter and thought it sound like a read not to be missed.

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    1. I agree that it is not to be missed; I can already see that it will be one of my favorites for this year. Perhaps you’d like to join in? If you have the time, of course. Xo

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  3. The painting is WONDERFUL and I’m glad you’re enjoying the book, Bellezza! I am not at all familiar with it, but now I want to read more about it here.

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  4. Thanks for the post, Meredith! I’m glad you’re enjoying it. I think we are at about the same place in the novel just now. The sledding is my favourite scene so far too. So vivid! Thanks for joining in and spreading the word.

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  5. Oh, you do make me want to read this! I love Everyman Library classics and had noted they were publishing their own translation–very unusual! Wow, a Nobel winner. So odd when a Nobel winner is unknown in English.

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