TwentyHaavardsholm, Espen: Tjue
Oslo in the mid 60s; Nils is twenty years old and a student. The dark-haired uptown girl Maria becomes his girlfriend, but backpacking through Europe both Nils and his childhood friend Zakk are attracted to Jane, a bigmouthed girl from Brooklyn. Nils dreams of being a writer, to revolutionize the bourgeois novel, and with his friend Elias he wants to start a literary magazine. Zakk has his own goals, “detonating a bomb, exposing a fraud and turning literature upside down”. At the same time it seems as if Zakk is carrying a darkness inside him – what is happening to him? And what kind of double play is the charismatic leader figure and saboteur’s son Åsmund up to?
In Twenty we are reacquainted with several characters from The Boy in the Passport Photo, and again the author has fictionalized elements of his own biography. Espen Haavardsholm has created a novel about tremendous dreams, ambitions and longings, about friendship, love and eroticism, about bursting forward and overstepping boundaries, but also about what might happen if you go too far.
Praise for Twenty:
”…most of all this is an appealing and captivating story about the fantastic heights and dreadful lows of youth. About stupidity and arrogance, alienation and dependence, death urges and joy of life. We are introduced to a large and typical-of-its-time gallery of characters from the Norwegian 60s: deceitful uptown girls, precocious men of literature and sexually frustrated landladies. [Haavardsholm] manages to create a well-balanced ending to a story which on the outside is simple and thrilling, but deep down advanced and packed with symbolism”
“Top of the range. His writing is catchy and stimulating”
First published: 2006, Forlaget Oktober
Espen Haavardsholm: Biography and bibliography
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