Jon Fosse: Naustet (Boathouse)

The latest addition to my website is Jon Fosse‘s Naustet (Boathouse). This is an early Fosse novel but still recognisable as part of his exploration of the dark Norwegian soul. Baard is in his thirties but still lives with his mother and has no job except occasionally playing guitar at weddings and dances. One day he meets Knut, who was his best friend at school. The pair had formed a band but had not met for more than ten years. Knut is now married with two young daughters and has a job as a music teacher. They are visiting his mother. Baard will meet Knut’s wife (neither he nor we know her name) out fishing and then out walking and then again at the local community dance where he is playing. We learn he is writing a novel about these events and we get his perspective but then,, even though we follow his thoughts, we see Knut’s perspective and he is clearly jealous of Baard’s relationship with his wife. As this is a Fosse novel we know that it will not end well, as Baard retreats from the world entirely to write the novel we are reading.

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