Fiction Bengt Ohlsson Gregorius: A Novel

ISBN 13: 9780393066524

Gregorius: A Novel

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9780393066524: Gregorius: A Novel

“Both a riveting novel on its own merits and an astonishing gloss on an earlier masterpiece.”―Margaret Atwood

Bengt Ohlsson, one of Sweden’s most successful young writers, has responded to the classic Doctor Glas with Gregorius, which is the voice of Pastor Gregorius over the course of what could be his last and fateful summer. Gregorius is a rancorous, malodorous, and unattractive figure married to a girl young enough to be his granddaughter. But his sense of his own mortality, of his personal inadequacy, and his tenuous hold on happiness are uniquely absorbing and haunting. It is a compelling study of loneliness, longing, and the nature of love, the desires that bring people together and the fears that keep them apart.

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About the Author:

Bengt Ohlsson lives in Stockholm, where he is a journalist, columnist, and novelist. He won the August Prize, Sweden’s most prestigious literary award, for Gregorius.

From Publishers Weekly:

Swede Ohlsson draws a secondary character from Hjalmar Söderberg's classic Doctor Glas out to center stage, where his tragic inner life is displayed with an extraordinary depth of feeling. Pastor Gregorius is overweight, slovenly and desperate. As a priest living in turn-of-the-20th-century Stockholm, he has come to see God's gift as the capacity for love, a love he feels he has been denied. As he goes from one small parish tragedy to the next, his ministrations feel like a bit of convincing acting and his overwhelming anxiety makes him feel like a fraud. But his sharpest pains come from his strained relationship with his much younger second wife and his continued failure to sire a child. Prescribed a long stay at a sanitarium to treat a heart that feels like a mink inside [his] breast, he continues his search for authentic connections to other people, however fleeting. His gracefully rendered tides of self-loathing and hope, combined with settings at once alien and picturesque, add up to a truly intimate novel, one that deepens greatly with familiarity with Doctor Glas. Written with a deft and sensitive hand, this is a remarkable dissection of angst and spiritual unrest. (May)
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Ohlsson, Bengt
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