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From the beloved author of Astrid & Veronika, a moving tale of friendship and redemption.  Fans of Astrid & Veronika and Chris Cleave's Little Bee will be thrilled to read Linda Olsson's third novel. Here is Olsson doing what she does best: illuminating the terrain of friendship and examining the many forms that love can take. Marion Flint, in her early fifties, has spent f From the beloved author of Astrid & Veronika, a moving tale of friendship and redemption.  Fans of Astrid & Veronika and Chris Cleave's Little Bee will be thrilled to read Linda Olsson's third novel. Here is Olsson doing what she does best: illuminating the terrain of friendship and examining the many forms that love can take. Marion Flint, in her early fifties, has spent fifteen years living a quiet life on the rugged coast of New Zealand, a life that allows the door to her past to remain firmly shut. But a chance meeting with a young boy, Ika, and her desire to help him force Marion to open the Pandora’s box of her memory. Seized by a sudden urgency to make sense of her past, she examines each image one-by-one: her grandfather, her mother, her brother, her lover. Perhaps if she can create order from the chaos, her memories will be easier to carry. Perhaps she’ll be able to find forgiveness for the little girl that was her. For the young woman she had been. For the people she left behind.   Olsson expertly interweaves scenes from Marion’s past with her quest to save Ika from his own tragic childhood, and renders with reflective tenderness the fragility of memory and the healing power of the heart.


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From the beloved author of Astrid & Veronika, a moving tale of friendship and redemption.  Fans of Astrid & Veronika and Chris Cleave's Little Bee will be thrilled to read Linda Olsson's third novel. Here is Olsson doing what she does best: illuminating the terrain of friendship and examining the many forms that love can take. Marion Flint, in her early fifties, has spent f From the beloved author of Astrid & Veronika, a moving tale of friendship and redemption.  Fans of Astrid & Veronika and Chris Cleave's Little Bee will be thrilled to read Linda Olsson's third novel. Here is Olsson doing what she does best: illuminating the terrain of friendship and examining the many forms that love can take. Marion Flint, in her early fifties, has spent fifteen years living a quiet life on the rugged coast of New Zealand, a life that allows the door to her past to remain firmly shut. But a chance meeting with a young boy, Ika, and her desire to help him force Marion to open the Pandora’s box of her memory. Seized by a sudden urgency to make sense of her past, she examines each image one-by-one: her grandfather, her mother, her brother, her lover. Perhaps if she can create order from the chaos, her memories will be easier to carry. Perhaps she’ll be able to find forgiveness for the little girl that was her. For the young woman she had been. For the people she left behind.   Olsson expertly interweaves scenes from Marion’s past with her quest to save Ika from his own tragic childhood, and renders with reflective tenderness the fragility of memory and the healing power of the heart.

30 review for The Memory of Love

  1. 5 out of 5

    Carrie

    Have you ever gotten into a reading funk where you find every book bland and boring? Where you have no motivation to pick up a book and read or if you do you set it aside because it is not catching your attention. Well lately I have been in a reading funk until I started The Memory of Love by Linda Olsson. The writing is fantastic I felt as though I was the character. I haven’t read a book that was so well written in 1st person narrative ever! I needed this book. It was refreshing and not like a Have you ever gotten into a reading funk where you find every book bland and boring? Where you have no motivation to pick up a book and read or if you do you set it aside because it is not catching your attention. Well lately I have been in a reading funk until I started The Memory of Love by Linda Olsson. The writing is fantastic I felt as though I was the character. I haven’t read a book that was so well written in 1st person narrative ever! I needed this book. It was refreshing and not like anything I have read in a long time. I just could not get enough. As a person have you ever done anything that you regret or blame yourself for and have never forgiven yourself? You carry that guilt with you never forgotten always there in the front of your mind? Well the main character Marion has and you go with her on journey of how she loved, lost, learn to forgive her self and how she found love again. It pulls you in and doesn’t let you go until the very end. I loved it. I couldn’t have picked a better book to read. One of my favorite books this year!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Whiskey

    How we so often allow ourselves only memories of the sadness, the pain. But we forget to allow ourselves the happiness and joy we experienced as well. She walks the beach, as she does every morning, in search of shells, driftwood, wholeness, and lost memory. The sea turns Marion's thoughts toward coherence, wholeness, and resilience--something she lacks."The sea allowed other elements to influence it temporarily, but it remained its own self." Marion's story alternates between events on the isola How we so often allow ourselves only memories of the sadness, the pain. But we forget to allow ourselves the happiness and joy we experienced as well. She walks the beach, as she does every morning, in search of shells, driftwood, wholeness, and lost memory. The sea turns Marion's thoughts toward coherence, wholeness, and resilience--something she lacks."The sea allowed other elements to influence it temporarily, but it remained its own self." Marion's story alternates between events on the isolated beach in New Zealand and a traumatic childhood in Sweden. One day, the retired doctor happens upon a Maori child, washed up like a "crucified starfish." Starfish regenerate lost limbs. Perhaps the starfish-child might be a signpost toward wholeness. As the publisher describes, "Marion Flint, in her early fifties, has spent fifteen years living a quiet life on the rugged coast of New Zealand, a life that allows the door to her past to remain firmly shut. But a chance meeting with a young boy, Ika, and her desire to help him force Marion to open the Pandora’s box of her memory. Seized by a sudden urgency to make sense of her past, she examines each image one-by-one: her grandfather, her mother, her brother, her lover. Perhaps if she can create order from the chaos, her memories will be easier to carry. Perhaps she’ll be able to find forgiveness for the little girl that was her. For the young woman she had been. For the people she left behind. Olsson interweaves scenes from Marion’s past with her quest to save Ika from his own tragic childhood, and renders with reflective tenderness the fragility of memory and the healing power of the heart." A friend of mine declares "The Memory of Love" a "saving book" that helps wounded readers heal from a loss that enslaves our memory. Love terminates swiftly, inexplicably, and sometimes violently. The injured person spends decades grieving the loss and imposes isolation on themselves to avoid risking new vulnerability. Marion cocooned herself in a lonely ignorance of the potential joys of new love. She merely "functioned" rather than "lived." Marion recognizes an old pattern when another's life becomes intrinsically interwoven with and indistinguishable from her own. In finding a replacement for the object of her heart's desire, she had found herself and wanted to care for her new purpose. "Strong feelings often breed a kind of benign arrogance: My passionate heart must not be questioned. I feel, therefore, I know. All my education, my entire adult life experience was just a thin scab over my bleeding child's heart." The source of Pain's River flows from childhood toxins and spills over green pasture on its way through the Isolated Delta's veins into Memory's Ocean. Many psychologists advise patients to live in the present rather than dwelling on the sadness of the past or fearing the future. Contrarily, Marion diagnoses that she has lived too much in the "eternal present." As a matter of survival, she has buried her past and lived without hope of the future. In her epigraph, Olsson quotes Adrienne Rich's poem, "From a Survivor," where the poetic narrator, after obsessing over a lost love for 20 years now realizes that the domineering memory was not "a god" and had no more power over her life. The "god" had failed to leap with her, and she, the survivor, carried through with the leap--a series of brief, amazing movements, each one making possible the next movement forward. Olsson seems to be comparing Rich's series of leaping "movements" to Marion's resolve to arrange a series of leaping memories. Marcel Proust and John Banville are my favorite explorers of fiendish memory, but in only 200 pages of gentle, accessible writing, Olsson offers one lonely woman's perspective. Marion questions whether, like a filmmaker, she can edit her memory--without redacting or erasing individual memories. Why has her subconscious selected painful memories while discarding joyous ones? Each experience is not just a separate event. All memory is interrelated. Why has she compressed thousands of days and nights into only a few shards--scenes that were not a fair representation of her life? So if she can merge her memories and sequence them correctly, she might create space for grace, forgiveness, and empathy ---toward HERSELF. Through routine and showing her love through actions, she might impose coherence on the chaos of Memory's Ocean. First the deluge of urgent water swallowing her, then the tide retreats, revealing treasures. Beautiful and sad. Worn and polished. Ordinary and wondrous. All her experiences are connected and influence her perception of the ones that follow. She cannot remove a memory, good or bad, from the ecosystem of her conscience without destroying her identity. “I had accepted that all the dark memories were mine. But I had never realized that the beautiful ones were mine too. I had a right to them. And the right to embrace them, regardless of what happened before and after. I had a right to my happiness, as well as my grief.” From the proper perspective, each loss we endure has the potential to prepare us for a new home, a healthier relationship, and a richer understanding of ourselves. **** Plot summary (view spoiler)[ The Memory of Love tells a story of extraordinary emotional depth and power. Marion, a retired surgeon, long divorced, lives on a remote beach in New Zealand. She looks back over the course of her life, trying to make sense of who she was, who she has become, and all the seemingly disparate story lines that have brought her to where she is. She wants urgently to feel whole again after years of tragedy, heartbreak, and numbness. Into her solitary life comes an unusual boy, Ika, who Marion discovers lying facedown on the beach. Quiet, mysterious, musically gifted, and probably suffering from some degree of autism, Ika profoundly affects Marion. He visits her every Thursday, and for reasons she doesn’t clearly understand, she feels “an inexplicable sense of anticipation. As if the opening of doors and tearing away of layers was a positive thing” (p. 9). They begin to work together on a kind of natural art project in a cove, and Marion cooks for him and teaches him piano. As the time passes, a deep and unspoken affinity and affection develops between them. One week, when Ika inexplicably doesn’t show up for their usual Thursday lunch, Marion senses something has happened. She searches desperately and finds him on the beach again, this time nearly drowned, with bruises all over his body. Suddenly, her involvement in Ika’s life becomes much more complicated. It’s clear that Ika’s home life is not safe and Marion must decide how to help him. As the story unfolds, flashbacks from Marion’s past reveal a life filled with trauma, fear, and loneliness: the wrenching separation from her beloved grandfather when her mother-a beautiful, ambitious, emotionally distant actress-takes her to live in Stockholm; the violent deaths of her mother and stepfather; and another painful separation, this time from her baby brother, when she is forced to live with her uncle after her parents die. The events of her life have led Marion to shut down emotionally in order to survive. She wills herself to erase the past, to become a different person with a new name, Marion, instead of her given name of Marianne. But the past has an uncanny way of showing up again, however hard Marion has tried to keep it at bay. Her relationship with Ika serves as an invitation both to reconnect with her painful history and to create a new kind of life, one that would integrate all that she’s been through and allow her to move forward with a sense of wholeness. Lyrical, unflinchingly honest, and emotionally complex, The Memory of Love explores the limits of what the human heart can endure-and the grace that waits inside the most painful losses. ....From the Reader's Guide (hide spoiler)] Linda Olsson on the absence of motherly love (view spoiler)["The mothers in my novels are absent, dead, neglectful, or simply unable to nurture and love their children. I think there is a reason for the special place that the idea of maternal love holds in real life, and symbolically in all cultures and all times. I do believe that it is essential in order for a child to grow into a caring, confident adult who is able to give love. It would be nice to think that motherly love flows instinctively when a child is born. Sadly, this is not so. A childhood without motherly love leaves the child without the sense of self-worth that is required in order to be able to love. In a sense such children will remain children all their lives. When Marianne/Marion meets the little boy Ika, I think they both find something in the other to fill the void that a lost mother has left behind. The little boy quietly seeks the woman’s company, and there is a scene in the book where Marianne/Marion asks herself who is rescuing whom, who has the greatest need of the other. For me, it’s a comforting thought that we are free to search for the people to guide and help us. The replacements for the mothers we never had. Looking back on my own life, I think I have done so." "I recently read this quote by the Roman philosopher Seneca, “We are in the habit of saying that it was not in our power to choose the parents who were allotted to us, that they were given to us by chance. But we can choose whose children we would like to be.” I found it immensely comforting. In Swedish there is a term called “Dandelion Children.” They are children who have somehow managed to grow like little weeds, without nourishment or sunshine, pushing through minute cracks in the road surface or wherever they have found a glimpse of air and light. They are children who seem to own an irrepressible will to live. I think the loss of a “real” family, for whatever reason, will leave a child with a scar. But for those who have been rejected or abandoned such scars take longer to heal, or may never heal at all. All my life I have longed for a big family, and I consider my divorce the greatest sorrow of my adult life. However, when it happened, my children were adults and they have the benefit of all their family members on both sides." The Tragedies. (I'm using the name Marion across the board here, even though she was Marianne as a child.) Marion's mother was killed by her husband, Marion's step-father, and presumably, the father of Daniel (her little brother.) Marion woke in the night to hear them fighting (a common occurrence.) But something about this one seemed different to her, because she heard loud crashes and thuds, then terrible sounds which sounded like a hurt animal, and then nothing. She went from her bed to their bedroom to find her mother lying splayed on the floor, and Hans (step-father) sprawled on the bed, snoring and obviously passed out from excessive drink. He had beat and hit her mother to the point that she's lying immovable, blood emanating from her head, and frothy blood from her lips, her breathing very irregular. Marion gets a knife from the kitchen, walks over to Hans on the bed, and plunges it into his neck. He flails but is unable to do anything else. She stabs him repeatedly until he no longer moves or reacts. She goes back to her mother on the floor who, with great effort, reaches out for the knife, pries it from Marion's hands, grips it in her own, and then it seems, dies. Marion goes back to bed, next to Daniel, and stays there until she finally falls back to sleep. In the aftermath, Marion is sent to live with her uncle (her mother's brother). Daniel is sent elsewhere, we are not told where. Fast forward to Marion visiting New Zealand, after her divorce. She stumbles, almost literally, across a naked man, lying on the beach, face down, sunning himself. After an embarrassing introduction, they begin to talk and find themselves inexplicably drawn to one another, falling easily into conversation. He (Michael--a visitor from Canada) invites Marion to join him as he's photographing different things (while on assignment for a magazine.) She surprises herself by accepting, having just met this man. The following days are filled with talk, wonder, laughter, discussions on "love," and things which make her feel "alive" for the first time in a long time. Feeling more like herself than she'd ever thought possible. At ease and happy with who she was. On their last night together, after making love, and Michael sleeping contentedly next to her, she watches him sleep, and gently lets her fingers explore his body. Flashback to young Marion and baby Daniel: Marion comes home from school and finds him crying and covered in blood, and her mother distressed and crying as well. It seems he had crawled into the fireplace tools when their mother was being inattentive, and somehow had managed to fall on them, receiving a significant cut/gash under his shoulder/arm, going from his shoulder blade into his armpit. Marion, per usual, takes charge, picks him up and assesses that most of the bleeding is now done. She pulls off his bloodied shirt and takes him into his bed, where she caresses him to sleep while licking the wound. Back to Marion and Michael: As her fingers continue their foray across his body, they find a scar-- a half-moon shaped scar running from his scapula into his armpit. So, she now knows this man with whom she's been spending these beautiful, easy, love-filled days is her little half-brother. And she feels herself falling into nothingness. In the morning light, she digs out his passport to see his name (Mikael Daniel), and the fact that he was born in the specific parish of Stockholm, Sweden, and on the date she remembers as his birthday. It is confirmed. He is Daniel. She says nothing to him. He knows something is off, but she says she's just tired. He has a meeting he has to go to but insists they meet in Auckland when it's done-- only a day or two away. He confesses his love for her. She returns the sentiment but feels the world dropping out from beneath her. After he drives away, she sits and stares at the ocean, frustrated at the cruelty of all of this, and throws her cell phone far into the waves (his only way of contacting her), knowing she can't see him again. She somehow manages to get through those following days. Barely. Then weeks. Then a year. That year later, she's in a bookstore, browsing for nothing in particular. When she's met with her own gaze, her own image on a magazine cover. It's obviously one that Mikael had taken of her during their time together. She takes the magazine without even opening it, pays for it and walks out. After she gets home she reads it. It's Mikael's photographic album "Man and the Sea," and it's won the Pulitzer Prize. Then she sees he has won that prize posthumously. He never reached Auckland, killed in a car accident somewhere along the way. So, Marion who knew the love of her grandfather -- but was then taken away by her vain, simpering, idiot mother. To have her love shifted in caring for her little brother, who adored her back. Then to have him taken away after the death of her mother and step-father. Then she stumbles across this "perfect" man, with whom she feels such a connection, falls in love, hesitantly and then willingly. Only to have him taken away, with the knowledge he's her half-brother, and then also because he dies. God, can you wonder why this woman struggles with love?? Acceptance? (hide spoiler)]

  3. 5 out of 5

    Cheryl

    Escaping her Stockholm, Sweden past, Marianne moves to a beachfront cottage on the coast of New Zealand. She finds herself in a small, unique community where she will always be the outsider, "the artist" or "the doctor." For fifteen years, she succeeds in ignoring the world, "I could ignore the world as much as I liked, but it would still be there and it would continue to affect me and my environment regardless of what I thought or did." Then one day at age fifty-five, she finds a little boy, Ik Escaping her Stockholm, Sweden past, Marianne moves to a beachfront cottage on the coast of New Zealand. She finds herself in a small, unique community where she will always be the outsider, "the artist" or "the doctor." For fifteen years, she succeeds in ignoring the world, "I could ignore the world as much as I liked, but it would still be there and it would continue to affect me and my environment regardless of what I thought or did." Then one day at age fifty-five, she finds a little boy, Ika, on the beach and her life changes. The book has a unique emotional depth that really comes across partly because of the first person narrative. You really get to grow with and understand this character. Using both first person and third person point of views to weave into stories of her present and past lives, Marianne reveals some shocking information about a traumatic past. Throughout the book you wonder: why has she secluded herself? Slowly but surely, the story is revealed. What is appealing is how Ika, the little boy, becomes the subject that aids Marianne in finally acknowledging her life. Ika, who is a traumatized kid with a mild form of autism, is adorable and unique. As a reader, you see why Marianne is drawn to him. He's mysterious, gifted, intelligent, and socially awkward. But Ika has troubles at home and later, when Marianne finds him half-dead in the sea, the book takes a turn. As Marianne tries to understand Ika, she tries to understand her childhood through flashbacks: being snatched from her loving grandfather, raised by a stoic mother and crazy stepfather, comforted by the birth of her half brother only to be torn away from him by a terrible tragedy that has her scarred. Boy did this character know abandonment and terror. Memory of Love is poetic and poignant wordplay. Like the sea that forms a backdrop in the novel, the words seem to flow smoothly and seamlessly. It is a simple story laden with suspense and emotional complexity. And the suspense becomes gratifying when two major surprises are revealed. A short read, this is definitely one to try while on a beach vacation.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Julie Christine

    Three and a half stars. This quiet, lovely book slipped into my hands last night and its power was such that I read it in one sitting. I’m grateful there is still room in this 140-character, flash-fiction world for introspective and lyrical works—that writers pen them and publishers release them. The premise centers on a middle-aged Swedish woman, Marion/Marianne, who immigrated to New Zealand fifteen years earlier. She came seeking solace and an escape from a tragic past, which the author spins Three and a half stars. This quiet, lovely book slipped into my hands last night and its power was such that I read it in one sitting. I’m grateful there is still room in this 140-character, flash-fiction world for introspective and lyrical works—that writers pen them and publishers release them. The premise centers on a middle-aged Swedish woman, Marion/Marianne, who immigrated to New Zealand fifteen years earlier. She came seeking solace and an escape from a tragic past, which the author spins out slowly over the course of the narrative in italicized flashbacks. Marion has retired early from her village medical practice and spends her days collecting nature’s flotsam from the beach to create a vague sort of art. She is visited every Thursday by an apparition named Ika—a village boy who says little but seems to need her company and her soup. Then one Thursday, a year into his weekly visits, she saves Ika from drowning and, as it turns out, from likely death by child abuse. The boy enters her home and opens her heart to the possibility of love. His need of shelter and protection brings back her memories of her own vulnerable and violent past. Not everything worked well for me here. I found the notion that a physician would see a mildly autistic young boy on a weekly basis for a year and not recognize the signs of neglect and abuse, nor report them when she had concrete evidence, troubling, at best. The subplot of her childhood in Sweden had me until its end twist, which is far-fetched and bizarre. The author tries to reason this in a foreshadowing bit of “truth is stranger than fiction” philosophizing, but there’s the irony. In truth, life is baffling; in fiction such astonishing coincidences feel manipulative. But there is still much to admire in this evocative story about the fragile nature of relationships. I’ll admit my soft spot for New Zealand settings, and I can bear witness to Olsson’s rendering of its lonely, captivating coast and a village that pays attention to interlopers in a distracted sort of way. She captures the somnambulistic nature of a remote, insular place and shows how aloneness and loneliness relate and separate.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Cathrine

    This is a courageous book. A page turning, heart wrenching, life changing book. A healing journey more than a novel. As the main character searches for coherence, forgiveness, self love / empathy and healing the reader is moved to do the same. There is no right way to live, there is no wrong way. There is merely this life we are gifted and the connections we make and the love we give along the way. And the love we let ourselves receive. Thank you Linda … and thank you for moving us to tears by th This is a courageous book. A page turning, heart wrenching, life changing book. A healing journey more than a novel. As the main character searches for coherence, forgiveness, self love / empathy and healing the reader is moved to do the same. There is no right way to live, there is no wrong way. There is merely this life we are gifted and the connections we make and the love we give along the way. And the love we let ourselves receive. Thank you Linda … and thank you for moving us to tears by the “lift” us at the end ! Bravo!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Viv

    This story is so beautifully written that you can almost feel and smell the sea and puts you inside the mind of the narrator who is the main character.I love who the author uses 1st person narration and then writes the memories and dreams from someone else perspective like Marion is on the inside looking out.Such an amazing novel that after finishing it, I still wanted to hold on to the beautiful and unique friendship between Marion and Ika. The storytelling makes you want to protect Ika and hop This story is so beautifully written that you can almost feel and smell the sea and puts you inside the mind of the narrator who is the main character.I love who the author uses 1st person narration and then writes the memories and dreams from someone else perspective like Marion is on the inside looking out.Such an amazing novel that after finishing it, I still wanted to hold on to the beautiful and unique friendship between Marion and Ika. The storytelling makes you want to protect Ika and hopeful that your memories can heal and comfort yourself and others.Memories can't be always beautiful, but that's what life is about creating beauty out of the sad and harsh moments. Linda Olsson knows what life is truly about, for example in this short quote on her novel: "Life is irrational and illogical,and we have to accept that, and try to arrange our lives around it. But perhaps we do need to try to understand our own history. See it as a coherent whole. There is a timeline to our lives. One event leads to another. One act produces a result, which becomes the basis for our next action."The Memory of Love is a remarkable,beautifully detailed, deeply affecting and moving story that will make you put the book down at times to control your emotions. A must read. It became one of my favorite books;I read it two times in a row. Olsson teach us through her novel how each of us fight with our inner-self to forget the painful memories that haunt us. A must read;it would change the way you look at love. You would not stop thinking and reflecting about it for a long time. 5 lovely and admirable stars full of uncontrolled emotions. Received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mack

    This is a powerful and emotive novel and beautifully written. Marion Flint has spent fifteen years living on the rugged coast of New Zealand, living a life of isolation to escape the trauma of her past until a young boy, Ika, comes along and helps her to heal. It's a reminder of the healing of the heart, the sadness and fragility of life, the power of music and forgiveness. This is a powerful and emotive novel and beautifully written. Marion Flint has spent fifteen years living on the rugged coast of New Zealand, living a life of isolation to escape the trauma of her past until a young boy, Ika, comes along and helps her to heal. It's a reminder of the healing of the heart, the sadness and fragility of life, the power of music and forgiveness.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Vicki

    Ika and Marion are an "unlikely" friendship, or at least not your typical one. Marion lives in New Zealand. She goes here to get away from problems and to try to heal. She's not doing too well with that, until a little boy comes along and teachers HER some of life's lessons. She is in her fifties, so how can a child help her heal? Good question! But that's exactly what he does. This book will make you think about love, friendship, how/why people are placed in our paths, how life is one chain of r Ika and Marion are an "unlikely" friendship, or at least not your typical one. Marion lives in New Zealand. She goes here to get away from problems and to try to heal. She's not doing too well with that, until a little boy comes along and teachers HER some of life's lessons. She is in her fifties, so how can a child help her heal? Good question! But that's exactly what he does. This book will make you think about love, friendship, how/why people are placed in our paths, how life is one chain of reactions after another. For every action there is a consequence whether a good or bad one. We make choices in life and there is always a consequence so we learn (hopefully) to make better choices in life. I hope others will read this and see how a child can help a woman in her fifties learn about life.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Michele Harrod

    Ah I have read this - it was called "The Kindness of Your Nature" - not sure why Linda Olsson's books keep coming out with different names? My original review seems to have disappeared - I know I loved this, it is haunting and beautiful. Ah... found the orginal review - yes I did love it!! English Title : 'The Kindness of Your Nature' - now issued as "The Memory of Love". I adore Linda Olsson's writing (previous novels 'Sonata for Miriam' and 'Let Me Sing You Gentle Songs') so I'd been itching t Ah I have read this - it was called "The Kindness of Your Nature" - not sure why Linda Olsson's books keep coming out with different names? My original review seems to have disappeared - I know I loved this, it is haunting and beautiful. Ah... found the orginal review - yes I did love it!! English Title : 'The Kindness of Your Nature' - now issued as "The Memory of Love". I adore Linda Olsson's writing (previous novels 'Sonata for Miriam' and 'Let Me Sing You Gentle Songs') so I'd been itching to start this. As usual, in just a few short paragraphs, I was swept away by the beauty of her writing. Evry now and then I start a book and I begin to feel a sort of swelling in the centre of my chest. A pain that I can't quite attribute to a specific organ, but one that pulsates through my torso. A sort of anticipation, a longing, an almost fear. When this feeling comes, I know I have found a book that will speak to my soul. Yet again, Linda Olsson, has played orator to mine with this exquisitely beautiful novel - one about running from the past and tentatively dabbling with the future. About immersing yourself in the fullness of it all, to finally understanding that all of it was yours, and all of it mattered. Told with such vivid eloquence, I could feel the sand between my toes, the salt on my lips, and the fullness in my heart, with every word. Once again I will share a short paragraph with you, inviting you to find the English version of this book (if you are English), and dive right in - as you would into a cool sea on a hot day. "Watching the sea through the viewfinder I thought about what it had come to stand for. Coherence. To me the sea had come to represent coherence. Wholeness. And resilience perhaps. The sea allowed other elements to influence it temporarily, but it remained its own self. I longed for that kind of resilience. For a sense of wholeness. I wanted to know that whatever lay in store for me I would be able to remain myself. My whole self, containing everything I had ever been, and everything I had the potential to become".

  10. 5 out of 5

    Michele Harrod

    English Title : 'The Kindness of Your Nature'. I adore Linda Olsson's writing (previous novels 'Sonata for Miriam' and 'Let Me Sing You Gentle Songs') so I'd been itching to start this. As usual, in just a few short paragraphs, I was swept away by the beauty of her writing. Evry now and then I start a book and I begin to feel a sort of swelling in the centre of my chest. A pain that I can't quite attribute to a specific organ, but one that pulsates through my torso. A sort of anticipation, a long English Title : 'The Kindness of Your Nature'. I adore Linda Olsson's writing (previous novels 'Sonata for Miriam' and 'Let Me Sing You Gentle Songs') so I'd been itching to start this. As usual, in just a few short paragraphs, I was swept away by the beauty of her writing. Evry now and then I start a book and I begin to feel a sort of swelling in the centre of my chest. A pain that I can't quite attribute to a specific organ, but one that pulsates through my torso. A sort of anticipation, a longing, an almost fear. When this feeling comes, I know I have found a book that will speak to my soul. Yet again, Linda Olsson, has played orator to mine with this exquisitely beautiful novel - one about running from the past and tentatively dabbling with the future. About immersing yourself in the fullness of it all, to finally understanding that all of it was yours, and all of it mattered. Told with such vivid eloquence, I could feel the sand between my toes, the salt on my lips, and the fullness in my heart, with every word. Once again I will share a short paragraph with you, inviting you to find the English version of this book (if you are English), and dive right in - as you would into a cool sea on a hot day. "Watching the sea through the viewfinder I thought about what it had come to stand for. Coherence. To me the sea had come to represent coherence. Wholeness. And resilience perhaps. The sea allowed other elements to influence it temporarily, but it remained its own self. I longed for that kind of resilience. For a sense of wholeness. I wanted to know that whatever lay in store for me I would be able to remain myself. My whole self, containing everything I had ever been, and everything I had the potential to become".

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jo

    This turned out to be the perfect book to end the year on focusing, as it does, on looking back and coming to terms with the past and turning to a new and hopeful future. I remember really enjoying Linda Olsson's 'Astrid and Veronika' and 'The Memory of Love' has a similar feel and subject matter; one young and one older character forming a relationship with secrets, often dark ones, on both sides. In this book the age difference is greater, with the main character, Marion, being over 50 and the y This turned out to be the perfect book to end the year on focusing, as it does, on looking back and coming to terms with the past and turning to a new and hopeful future. I remember really enjoying Linda Olsson's 'Astrid and Veronika' and 'The Memory of Love' has a similar feel and subject matter; one young and one older character forming a relationship with secrets, often dark ones, on both sides. In this book the age difference is greater, with the main character, Marion, being over 50 and the young boy she meets on the beach one day, Ika, only eight yet in actuality they appear closer in age where temperament is concerned and as memories of Marion's childhood surface, the connection between the two appears ever closer. As with 'Astrid', there is little in the way of plot and rather we experience an unravelling of the past and its interplay with the present in slow, often melancholy, but lovely writing. Marion's house on a New Zealand beach, with the huge skies, the shifting ocean and long windy beaches, appealed to my sensibilities and provided an effective backdrop to her memories of emotional pain and tragedy that rise to the surface bit by bit through her interaction with this young boy. I could also appreciate her sense of being an outsider, despite having lived in New Zealand fifteen years being a long time transplant myself. If I had a criticism of the novel, it would be that coincidence plays rather a large part on occasion and that the way in which the three main characters come together appears relatively effortless if inevitable, but still this is a short sweet novel that has the individual's move towards wholeness and self-acceptance at its core.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Heidi

    Had some problems with this book--yet was inspired to finish it. I felt turned off by bad writing, like this from page 10: “There is a timeline to our lives. One event leads to another. One act products a result, which becomes the basis for our next action. Looking at it like this we give our lives a kind of causality.” Or this from page 65: “What did she mean? And who was ‘he’? What did she expect me to say? Or do? I felt as if I were missing something. That there was an elusive aspect of her s Had some problems with this book--yet was inspired to finish it. I felt turned off by bad writing, like this from page 10: “There is a timeline to our lives. One event leads to another. One act products a result, which becomes the basis for our next action. Looking at it like this we give our lives a kind of causality.” Or this from page 65: “What did she mean? And who was ‘he’? What did she expect me to say? Or do? I felt as if I were missing something. That there was an elusive aspect of her story that I couldn’t catch.” Way, way too much "telling" when "showing" would have elevated the story. Also, I found the dialogue stilted. All that said, I am still intrigued, to a certain extent, about the plot, so that's something.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ulla

    This was the third Linda Olsson novel I've read, and somehow they just keep getting better. I can't describe what it is really except that it is BEAUTIFUL! This was the third Linda Olsson novel I've read, and somehow they just keep getting better. I can't describe what it is really except that it is BEAUTIFUL!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Sally906

    There is a lot of tragedy in THE KINDNESS OF YOUR NATURE but it is not a depressing book at all. Beautifully told, the story unfolds slowly yet relentlessly that took me on ride that I didn’t even realise had me on the edge of my seat. A story that had twists and turns which left me sometimes breathless, sometimes saddened and very much surprised at one stage. I really came to care for Marion and Ika – two people who needed each other in order to accept that while bad things happen in your life, There is a lot of tragedy in THE KINDNESS OF YOUR NATURE but it is not a depressing book at all. Beautifully told, the story unfolds slowly yet relentlessly that took me on ride that I didn’t even realise had me on the edge of my seat. A story that had twists and turns which left me sometimes breathless, sometimes saddened and very much surprised at one stage. I really came to care for Marion and Ika – two people who needed each other in order to accept that while bad things happen in your life, good things happen to and you can ‘own’ the good things as much, if not more than the bad. Marion had spent all of her life feeling that because of the bad things that happened to her, she didn’t deserve the good things that had happened. In order to live she needed to learn this fact. All Ika had known was bad, now he could see that there is another way of life. Author, Linda Olsson, writes vividly, her words constantly conjured up pictures in my mind and evoked feelings of joy, sadness and fear – I could feel the sand between my toes, see the waves rolling in, actually experience the fear and bewilderment of a small girl unable to protect herself trying desperately to protect her baby brother. Not a word is wasted – it is all reflective and to do honour to the author I too reflected on what I was reading; on what Olsson was saying, and agreeing with her. There were also an aspect of Ika that I related to; his diagnosis of mild autism that spoke to me as well having just found out that our oldest grandson has this diagnosis. Seeing Ika blossom and grow into a lovely young boy with the proper support gave me hope. I don’t usually remember to write down quotes as I read them then when I think oh I should have written that down I forget where they are located in the book (advantage of e-readers – when using one of them quotes can be saved readily). Anyhow this paragraph stood out for me so I actually wrote it down – just forgot to write down the page number!!! “…But far-fetched things do happen. In fact, many people's entire lives are completely far-fetched. I think we are constantly surrounded by extraordinary possibilities. Whether we are aware of them or not, whether we choose to act on them or not, they are there. What is offered to us that we choose not to act upon falls by the wayside, and the road that is our life is littered with rejected, ignored and unnoticed opportunities, good and bad. Chance meetings and coincidences become extraordinary only when acted upon. Those that we allow to pass us by are gone forever. We never know where they night have taken us. I think they were never meant to happen. The potential was there, but only for the briefest moment, before we consciously or unconsciously chose to ignore it…”

  15. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    Julie recommended this and I take her recommendations seriously. There are many problems with this novel, but I found it thoroughly engrossing and worthwhile. The narrator, a child of a dysfunctional and destructive family, tells her story of abuse, neglect and loss as she tells another story of Ika, a young abused child , who finds her and builds her up making her almost whole. The stories are not similar, but build upon each other. The narrator arrives in New Zealand via Sweden and London, thro Julie recommended this and I take her recommendations seriously. There are many problems with this novel, but I found it thoroughly engrossing and worthwhile. The narrator, a child of a dysfunctional and destructive family, tells her story of abuse, neglect and loss as she tells another story of Ika, a young abused child , who finds her and builds her up making her almost whole. The stories are not similar, but build upon each other. The narrator arrives in New Zealand via Sweden and London, through a devoted grandfather, a clueless, careless mother, caring gay uncles, a loveless marriage, a passionate affair and lastly a hermit's life in a small village half way across the world in a self imposed exile. Ika, the orphan, like most abused children rarely makes eye contact or smiles and keeps his distance. He is described as mildly autistic and a musical savant. I find this troubling. Autistic children, in my experience, are not autistic because of abuse and neglect. Autistic children do not become trusting and loving because they are loved. This is the part which I find unrealistic, still it makes for a nice story. The narrators detachment to her own life indicates that her life has been "on the spectrum". Yet she is not autistic either, just a neglected child who copes, but does not trust others or herself. She has lost her brother and trust and yet becomes a family doctor. She retires early to walk the beach. In her mid 50's she is found by a boy and restarts her life. Not very believable , but such a nice idea. Together they create a family and a collaborative monument.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Amanda G. Stevens

    Why I Stopped Reading on p. 20 - Summary and introspection compose 100% of the first twenty pages of this book. Intolerable first-person narrator, spelling things out and philosophizing with repetitive obvious statements that sometimes feel like parody (but clearly are not). Lest you think I exaggerate, see examples below: p. 8 - For some time I had been filled with a growing sense of urgency. It hadn't happened suddenly, more like a slow progression of steps so minute I had not taken notice. Bu Why I Stopped Reading on p. 20 - Summary and introspection compose 100% of the first twenty pages of this book. Intolerable first-person narrator, spelling things out and philosophizing with repetitive obvious statements that sometimes feel like parody (but clearly are not). Lest you think I exaggerate, see examples below: p. 8 - For some time I had been filled with a growing sense of urgency. It hadn't happened suddenly, more like a slow progression of steps so minute I had not taken notice. But one day I became aware of a feeling of restlessness. As if there were something I urgently needed to address. I felt a strong need to put aspects of my life in some sort of order. It didn't concern anybody else, but even though it was something I needed to do just for me, it did feel acutely important. Why, I couldn't quite understand. My life had been the same for years, and I didn't expect any dramatic changes. Nothing had happened to prompt this shift. This sense of urgency. p. 19 - I think we are constantly surrounded by extraordinary possibilities. Whether we are aware of them or not, whether we choose to act on them or not, they are there. What is offered to us that we choose not to act upon falls by the wayside, and the road that is our life is littered with rejected, ignored and unnoticed opportunities, good and bad. Chance meeting and coincidences become extraordinary only when acted upon. Those that we allow to pass us by are gone forever. We never know where they might have taken us. I think they were never meant to happen. The potential was there, but only for the briefest moment, before we consciously or unconsciously chose to ignore it.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    This is a beautifully written and haunting story. Marion, living alone on the rugged coast of New Zealand , has locked away her feelings until a small boy shows up in her life. As she slowly allows him into her life, she gently peels back the layers if her past. Slowly slowly the details are revealed. The storytelling is seductive, drawing you in little by little. By the end you will ache for Marion, while at the same time you will be ever so hopeful. I could not stop thinking about this long This is a beautifully written and haunting story. Marion, living alone on the rugged coast of New Zealand , has locked away her feelings until a small boy shows up in her life. As she slowly allows him into her life, she gently peels back the layers if her past. Slowly slowly the details are revealed. The storytelling is seductive, drawing you in little by little. By the end you will ache for Marion, while at the same time you will be ever so hopeful. I could not stop thinking about this long after I was finished.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jill

    Maybe a 4.5. The prose is spare, so the story is powerful, sometimes almost shocking. The central question may be how does memory trick us, and it is an interesting question to consider.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    A big thank you to Marta for sending me this ARC. I would put this at 3.5 just because of the twist I was NOT expecting. This was a sweet read, I truly enjoyed it!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Ingrid

    Mooi

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    The Kindness of Your Nature by Linda Olsson is the April choice for the ANZ LitLovers book group, nominated by one of our Kiwi members. It is one of the most arresting books I’ve read recently. Olsson lives in New Zealand but she was born in Sweden and in her writing there is a kind of spare beauty that I have come to associate with Scandinavian and Nordic writing: a sense of windswept places, cleansing bracing weather, an awareness of seasons and an elegant sensuality that is focussed on texture The Kindness of Your Nature by Linda Olsson is the April choice for the ANZ LitLovers book group, nominated by one of our Kiwi members. It is one of the most arresting books I’ve read recently. Olsson lives in New Zealand but she was born in Sweden and in her writing there is a kind of spare beauty that I have come to associate with Scandinavian and Nordic writing: a sense of windswept places, cleansing bracing weather, an awareness of seasons and an elegant sensuality that is focussed on texture and light. (And this is perhaps why I was so peeved by the verbosity and self-indulgence of Karl Ove Knausgaard’s A Death in the Family. It seemed so Californian!) (Sorry, California, but you know what I mean). As I had passed through Raglan I slowed down and took the narrow road that snaked high above the sea. I found a spot where I could drive off the road and park, and went and sat on a grassy patch overlooking the sea. From here, the ocean was different from the one I lived with back home on my beach. Blindingly sparkling, turquoise blue, so intense it made the bright blue sky pale by comparison. Although I knew the waves were crashing far below, up there I could hear nothing. The sea looked alluringly peaceful, a glittering blue-green eternity. The light wind rustled the stands of flax that covered the slope below. (p. 152) The Kindness of Your Nature has an elegiac tone. From the outset the reader knows that the narrator, Marion Flint, has been badly damaged by childhood trauma although the cause is not revealed until she eventually is able to retrieve memories long suppressed. This technique works well: there is the here-and-now, telling the events that trigger her memories and revealing her dawning awareness that only confronting her painful past will enable her to live fully in the present. Then there are vignettes from the past, building the tension through the narrative as both Marion and the reader piece together shards of her life history so that they begin to form a coherent whole. To read the rest of my review please visit http://anzlitlovers.com/2013/04/04/th...

  22. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn

    Linda Olsson divides her time between New Zealand and Sweden (where she grew up). She draws on her knowledge of these two worlds to deliver a powerfully emotional novel. It took me a little while to get into the rhythm of the writing but once I did I was hooked and completed the book in almost one sitting. The story begins with a middle-aged woman (the narrator) making soup for her Thursday visitor, Ika, a small boy who is isolated, rarely speaks or smiles and is abused by the grandmother with wh Linda Olsson divides her time between New Zealand and Sweden (where she grew up). She draws on her knowledge of these two worlds to deliver a powerfully emotional novel. It took me a little while to get into the rhythm of the writing but once I did I was hooked and completed the book in almost one sitting. The story begins with a middle-aged woman (the narrator) making soup for her Thursday visitor, Ika, a small boy who is isolated, rarely speaks or smiles and is abused by the grandmother with whom he lives. Standing on the doorstep of her beachside cottage she says ‘Marianne’. She feels the need to retrieve this name rather than the English version she currently uses - Marion. The novel proceeds with increasing flashbacks to when Marion was Marianne, a Swedish child with a repressed memory of the life she lived with her mother and baby brother. Olsson allows the pace of the book to follow both Marion and Ika’s story and also the retrieval of Marianne’s memories. The flashbacks are not initially chronological: Marion needs to dig deeper and deeper to acknowledge and relive the love she has experienced and the losses and grief she has suffered. In the present, Marion becomes increasingly involved with Ika, particularly through their project to create an art work near the isolated beach where she lives. This creation is organic, made of pebbles, rocks, sand, shells, plants and feathers. The end result is something Ika, with his autistic way of seeing the world, can already envisage. There are tough moments in this novel. Shocks, terror, joy. There is also the beauty of the isolated coastal environment, lyrically described, and its deeper significance. “To me, the sea had come to represent coherence. Wholeness. And resilience perhaps. The sea allowed other elements to influence it temporarily, but it remained its own self.” Marion/Marianne’s journey towards wholeness and resilience is one in which I became totally absorbed. I look forward to reading more from this author.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Cheryl

    Marion Flint has lived a good life. As she gets ready to settle down and have a quiet life, she starts thinking about her life and her memories. She decides it is time to gather all of her memories so that she can become whole. Ike has gone attached to Marion. He visits her every Thursday. When Ike misses one of their visits, Marion finds him beaten. She takes him home with her. She gets the idea to have Ike help her with her memories. Together they take a journey that will bring them closer tog Marion Flint has lived a good life. As she gets ready to settle down and have a quiet life, she starts thinking about her life and her memories. She decides it is time to gather all of her memories so that she can become whole. Ike has gone attached to Marion. He visits her every Thursday. When Ike misses one of their visits, Marion finds him beaten. She takes him home with her. She gets the idea to have Ike help her with her memories. Together they take a journey that will bring them closer together then ever before. I liked this book however I was not in love with it. The beginning did start out slow for me. I found Marion to be flat and uninteresting in the present. However, the past is what made this book for me. This is because the mystery surrounding who Marion was as a child and what she is suppressing from her memory had me intrigued. Whenever the story would go back to the present it seemed like it stalled and got slow again. There were a few times that I had to skim the pages to get back to the past faster. As the story progressed I quickly put all of the pieces of the puzzle together and knew how it was going to end. While I did know the ending, I was still happy about it. There was not a lot of romance between Marion and her lover. To be honest I was glad about this. It would have distracted me from the story. I thought this book was a nice introduction to Linda Olsson and her books.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Michelle Devine-Traxler

    I'm not sure what drew me to this book initially. Maybe the title. Maybe how the book reminds us, that at some point, we all "review our lives" and try to make sense of it all. The past has a way of intruding or unfolding or reappearing. And thus, it IS what happens in the depth of the words in this book. When I started the book, I felt it to be incredibly dark, and then I felt .. hesitant to keep reading, because I knew I was going to fall upon something rather tragic. I did. More tragic, was - wh I'm not sure what drew me to this book initially. Maybe the title. Maybe how the book reminds us, that at some point, we all "review our lives" and try to make sense of it all. The past has a way of intruding or unfolding or reappearing. And thus, it IS what happens in the depth of the words in this book. When I started the book, I felt it to be incredibly dark, and then I felt .. hesitant to keep reading, because I knew I was going to fall upon something rather tragic. I did. More tragic, was - when my jaw dropped at page 179 - (I will not spoil it) because it just made my heart hurt when I realized I DID NOT SEE IT coming (I usually always do) before the author revealed it. Definitely book worth your time, your heart, and have a tissue. A well-written story is pure gold. I would give it 4.5 stars, but it only allows me to give it a 4 or a 5.. nothing in between. Excellent.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Alan

    "Perhaps she'll be able to find forgiveness for the little girl that was her." From the front flap. I wanted to give this 4 stars, but I don't do that for a book I don't recommend. The trauma is only for the stout heart. The trauma is worse because of the normal childhood acceptance of guilt, that can last a lifetime, for the abuse put on them. At the same time, there are some beautiful thoughts: "I had accepted that all the dark memories were mine. But I had never realised that the beautiful ones "Perhaps she'll be able to find forgiveness for the little girl that was her." From the front flap. I wanted to give this 4 stars, but I don't do that for a book I don't recommend. The trauma is only for the stout heart. The trauma is worse because of the normal childhood acceptance of guilt, that can last a lifetime, for the abuse put on them. At the same time, there are some beautiful thoughts: "I had accepted that all the dark memories were mine. But I had never realised that the beautiful ones were mine too. I had a right to them. And the right to embrace them, regardless of what happened before and after. I had a right to my happiness as well as my grief." "It is at the point of transition that awareness is created. The step into another state changes everything. As long as I was living in a state of ignorance, I had functioned. But I had not lived."

  26. 5 out of 5

    Lindsey

    Thanks to NetGalley, I finished The Memory of Love by Linda Olsson on the day it is supposed to be released. I felt this book had a beautiful flow and I loved the characters. And, while there was a trace of romance, it didn't have to be the center of the novel. Center was really the relationship between Marianne and Ika and how their relationship allowed Marianne to forgive her past and embrace all the different versions of herself she has been and in return open herself back up to the world. A Thanks to NetGalley, I finished The Memory of Love by Linda Olsson on the day it is supposed to be released. I felt this book had a beautiful flow and I loved the characters. And, while there was a trace of romance, it didn't have to be the center of the novel. Center was really the relationship between Marianne and Ika and how their relationship allowed Marianne to forgive her past and embrace all the different versions of herself she has been and in return open herself back up to the world. A beautiful transformation. This is the second book of Olsson's that I have read, and I am definitely going to have to pick up the one I missed in the middle, Sonata for Miriam. http://thisismybookblog.blogspot.com/...

  27. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie

    Such a beautifully written story. I bought this book on a whim after it caught my eye at the bookstore, and I'm so glad I did. I couldn't put it down, and when I had to, I couldn't stop thinking about it. The secrets the protagonist reveals throughout the story are shocking and heart breaking. What struck me most was Marion/ Marianne's ability to become stoic as a means of protection against the events that lead to her grief. There is something in that survival mode that I think most people can Such a beautifully written story. I bought this book on a whim after it caught my eye at the bookstore, and I'm so glad I did. I couldn't put it down, and when I had to, I couldn't stop thinking about it. The secrets the protagonist reveals throughout the story are shocking and heart breaking. What struck me most was Marion/ Marianne's ability to become stoic as a means of protection against the events that lead to her grief. There is something in that survival mode that I think most people can relate to at some level. It is a quick read if you allow it to be, but the text is rich with metaphors if you have time to explore it fully. The author did such a wonderful job weaving in feelings of sadness, hope, and finally, redemption.

  28. 4 out of 5

    ❤Marie Gentilcore

    I really enjoyed this story. It wasn't quite a 5 star for me but it was very close to 5 stars. It is the story of a woman, Marion, and how a young boy, Ika, changes her life. It was a moving story and I loved the writing; it reminded me of poetry but it wasn't until I read a line in the book on page 133 that read, "In her Aland Swedish dialect the words came out soft and thoughtful, and they affected me in a way the story didn't." that I knew that was how to describe the writing, soft and though I really enjoyed this story. It wasn't quite a 5 star for me but it was very close to 5 stars. It is the story of a woman, Marion, and how a young boy, Ika, changes her life. It was a moving story and I loved the writing; it reminded me of poetry but it wasn't until I read a line in the book on page 133 that read, "In her Aland Swedish dialect the words came out soft and thoughtful, and they affected me in a way the story didn't." that I knew that was how to describe the writing, soft and thoughtful. I recommend this book, it is short at only a little over 200 pages, but the story is very moving.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Mostafa Mostafa

    Sigh... Just got back from a journey of delving into the thoughts and mind of a sixty year old woman who is trying to make it up with her memories and move on...and what a wonderful journey that was. Olsson writes in an elegant, moving pace and style...the descriptions are so intimate and amazing..you could feel the pains and awes o the character from the very begining..:such a sad voice calling for help. The author gives you some flashbacks from the furure then decides that its too early for that Sigh... Just got back from a journey of delving into the thoughts and mind of a sixty year old woman who is trying to make it up with her memories and move on...and what a wonderful journey that was. Olsson writes in an elegant, moving pace and style...the descriptions are so intimate and amazing..you could feel the pains and awes o the character from the very begining..:such a sad voice calling for help. The author gives you some flashbacks from the furure then decides that its too early for that and returns to the old memories...a style which keeps you guessing what is really happening here. I loved this book, so moving and so full of hope ❤️❤️

  30. 5 out of 5

    Cathrine

    This is a courageous book. A page turning, heart wrenching, life changing book. A healing journey more than a novel. As the main character searches for coherence, forgiveness, self love / empathy and healing the reader is moved to do the same. There is no right way to live, there is no wrong way. There is merely this life we are gifted and the connections we make and the love we give along the way. And the love we let ourselves receive. Thank you Linda … and thank you for moving us to tears by t This is a courageous book. A page turning, heart wrenching, life changing book. A healing journey more than a novel. As the main character searches for coherence, forgiveness, self love / empathy and healing the reader is moved to do the same. There is no right way to live, there is no wrong way. There is merely this life we are gifted and the connections we make and the love we give along the way. And the love we let ourselves receive. Thank you Linda … and thank you for moving us to tears by the “lift” us at the end ! Bravo!

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