Cover image for Mirror, shoulder, signal : a novel
Title:
Mirror, shoulder, signal : a novel
Author:
Nors, Dorthe, 1970- author.
ISBN:
9781555978082
Personal Author:
Physical Description:
188 pages ; 22 cm
General Note:
"First published as Spejl, skulder, blink by Gyldendal, Copenhagen"--Copyright page.
Abstract:
Sonja is ready to get on with her life. She's over forty now, and the Swedish crime novels she translates are losing their fascination. She sees a masseuse, tries to reconnect with her sister, and is finally learning to drive. But under the overbearing gaze of her driving instructor, Sonja is unable to shift gears for herself. And her vertigo, which she has always carefully hidden, has begun to manifest at the worst possible moments. Sonja hoped her move to Copenhagen years ago would have left rural Jutland in the rearview mirror. Yet she keeps remembering the dramatic landscapes of her childhood-- the endless sky, the whooper swans, the rye fields --and longs to go back. But how can she return to a place that she no longer recognizes? And how can she escape the alienating streets of Copenhagen?

Available:*

Library
Copy
Call Number
Material Type
Status
Corning - Southeast Steuben County Library 1 FIC NOR Adult Paperback Fiction Book
Searching...

On Order

Summary

Summary

A smart, witty novel of driving lessons and vertigo, short-listed for the Man Booker International Prize

Sonja is ready to get on with her life. She's over forty now, and the Swedish crime novels she translates are losing their fascination. She sees a masseuse, tries to reconnect with her sister, and is finally learning to drive. But under the overbearing gaze of her driving instructor, Sonja is unable to shift gears for herself. And her vertigo, which she has always carefully hidden, has begun to manifest at the worst possible moments.

Sonja hoped her move to Copenhagen years ago would have left rural Jutland in the rearview mirror. Yet she keeps remembering the dramatic landscapes of her childhood--the endless sky, the whooper swans, the rye fields--and longs to go back. But how can she return to a place that she no longer recognizes? And how can she escape the alienating streets of Copenhagen?

In Mirror, Shoulder, Signal , Dorthe Nors brings her distinctive blend of style, humor, and insight to a poignant journey of one woman in search of herself when there's no one to ask for directions.


Author Notes

Dorthe Nors is the author of two novellas, So Much for That Winter ; a story collection, Karate Chop , winner of the Per Olov Enquist Literary Prize; and four novels. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker , Harper's Magazine , A Public Space , Tin House ,and elsewhere . She lives in Denmark.


Reviews 2

Booklist Review

All Sonja wants is to learn how to drive. Unfortunately, despite her best efforts, things aren't going well. Her first instructor terrifies her, her second instructor lusts after her, and Sonja's driving skills remain shaky at best. And the rest of her life isn't going so well, either. Past 40, unmarried, and bored with her job as a translator, Sonja is beginning to fear that the things she hoped for will never come to pass. Her relationship with her sister is as strained as ever, she is often lonely, and a move from rural Denmark to Copenhagen only relocated her existing problems to a new address. Nors' slim novel, a finalist for the 2017 Man Booker International Prize, allows the reader into Sonja's mind as she struggles to connect with the world around her. Though introspective, Sonja's observations about her own life are often painfully incorrect, but Nors stands back and allows Sonja to spin her wheels. Ultimately, it is her uncertainty that makes Sonja such an endearing character and gives the novel its quiet insights.--Winterroth, Amanda Copyright 2010 Booklist


Publisher's Weekly Review

The astute and contemplative latest from Nors (So Much for That Winter) follows 40-something Sonja, a transplant to Copenhagen from rural Jutland, as she belatedly comes to terms with adulthood. It's been years since she spoke to her simpler, better-adjusted sister, Kate, and she barely makes a living translating popular Swedish crime novels. While her massage therapist Ellen considers her an "emotional tight-ass," Sonja thinks of herself as a "parasite on the colossal cadaver of Western culture." Sonja, fighting nostalgia for her childhood in the rye fields, needs a change in her life, but she can't recapture her youth without finding a way to reach out to the estranged Kate, and she can't drive home from Copenhagen without a driver's license. She undertakes driving lessons, but problems arise when they trigger her latent vertigo. Out of this subtle emotional drama, Nors brings to life Sonja's everyday trials and lacerating self-doubt, with vivid characters like the quietly judgmental Ellen; Sonja's larger-than-life driving instructor, Jytte; and the distant Kate, to whom Sonja tepidly begins to write postcards. Not a lot happens this thoughtful novel, but not a lot has to. Nors conjures a gently fraught reality in prose that evokes a life paused halfway between nostalgia for the past and hope for the future. (June) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.


Google Preview