Category Archives: Grief

Per Petterson : Men in My Situation

Per Petterson has had a tragic life. In 1990 his parents, his brother, and his niece all died in the Scandinavian Star ferry disaster, where passengers were trapped in a fire. The case is still under investigation, and it appears it was a deliberate scheme to scuttle the boat for insurance purposes. In the Wake, published in 2002, was the first novel in which he wrote about this. His character Arvid Jansen, whom he describes as not an alter ego but a ‘stunt man’ is here shown to be overwhelmed by grief. He has lost his parents and his marriage has broken down. Continue reading Per Petterson : Men in My Situation

Amanda Lohrey – The Labyrinth, Vertigo

Amanda Lohrey is an Australian fiction writer. Over a writing career starting with The Morality of Gentlemen in 1984 she has written seven novels and one book of short stories. In 2012 she got the Patrick White Award, which seems to be a kind of consolation prize for highly regarded Australian writers with a solid body of work, who have never got the recognition they deserve. A few local awards, a Longlisting for the International Dublin Literary Award and that’s about it. But that is not to say she doesn’t take on controversial subjects. In The Morality of Gentleman she dives right into the politics of Unionism in her account of a complicated legal case from the 1950’s. She comes from a working-class background and says that her work is always political. Continue reading Amanda Lohrey – The Labyrinth, Vertigo