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Look Back on Happiness

Knut Hamsun

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .This, too, the lady bore quietly. And yet she was still young and handsome, a little plump, perhaps, for her height, but with a lovely, unwrinkled skin. She was quite unlike Miss Torsen, the only other good-looking lady at the farm; Miss Torsen was tall and dark.

But perhaps Mrs. Brede was not always so calm as she seemed. One evening when she went down to the men's hut and asked Solem to do her a service, I saw that her face was strange and covered with blushes. Would Solem come to her room and repair a window-blind that had fallen down? It was late in the evening, and the lady seemed to have been in bed already, and to have risen again. Solem did not appear very willing. Suddenly their eyes met, and clung for a moment. Yes, certainly, of course he would come....

What an iron face he had, and what a rogue he was!

Mrs. Brede departed.

But a moment later she returned to say that she had changed her mind. Never mind, thank you, she woul. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Every Hamsun book is great, and Look Back in Happiness is no exception. Here we have an older Hamsun persona still seasonally wandering the Norwegian countryside in search of work, while commenting on the modernization. As always, Hamsun offers the reader sharp insights into the motives of people th

This his last (or one of the last books) before he got involved into politics and tragically supported Nazi occupation of Norway, met Hitler (who read his books as a young men, well Gebbels read for sure). Of course, all of his books are gems. One of my favorite authors. I read this book in both Rus

First, Im getting sick of all this, this constant critique of every single thing in our lives, as if we really matter. We matter like a mouse matters. This pre packaged criticism , all set , all ready, here, facebook, instagram, this wanting to be important-- we are not---- fuels social media. My ow

De los tres de La Trilogía del Vagabundo, La Última Alegría es el más bello de todos en su forma. En este caso, Hamsun se vale de la experiencia que ya Knut Pedersen ostenta, hasta el punto en que las imágenes que evoca suelen ser preciosas. En ese sentido, el libro se despliega como un paisaje de a

"But one thing I'll never be done with: withdrawing to sit in the solitude in my room, surrounded by a deep darkness. In spite of all, that's the last joy. (131)The Last Joy, also translated as Look Back on Happiness, is the last of what Hamsun's so-called Wanderer Trilogy. It is preceded by Under t

In his last book of the Wanderer Trilogy, Hamsun's narrator is the same forward-looking individual as he was before in the trilogy. But he is also older. The narrator is in his seventies. At a certain age, what is there to look forward to but death? So the narrator lives vicariously through younger

I don't think I've ever read a better first chapter. It had me hooked immediately and then throughout the entire book. I love the way Hamsun writes and how he incorporates certain sentences that contain so much meaning. Love it, love it, love it.

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