Brekkukotsannáll or The Fish Can Sing

~by Halldòr Laxness
~translated by Magnus Magnusson

Halldòr Laxness (1902-1998) is among the foremost internationally known contemporary Icelandic authors. He even won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1955.

The Fish Can Sing was an enjoyable read, nothing spectacular, but good. This book is more about people than about plot. Alfgrìmur, the main character and the narrator of the story, was abandoned by his mother and was raised by his "grandparents." The book is a charming account of the people that come to stay at his grandparents un-official inn. (Their entire library is made up of the books that people forget when they leave.) As Alfgrìmur grows up he learns several poignant lessons and universal truths. All he wants to be is a lumpfisherman when he becomes older. But, several other people have far different ideas about what he should do.

I've really not given much of an idea of what this book is about, but it is beautifully written, enjoyable to read, and not extremely long. (Which is good when you don't have nearly enough time to read.)

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