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The Heart of Man (excerpt)

Jón Kalman Stefánsson

Born in Reykjavik in 1973, “Jón

Kalman Stefánsson's novels are

written from the same extreme

viewpoint where man is left to his

own devices, facing a world much

greater than himself; a world that

for him has neither cure, nor love,

but offers him only the changing seasons.

Hjarta Mansinns

(The Heart of Man)

which concludes the Icelandic trilogy

beginning with

Himnaríki og Helvíti (Heaven and Hell),

followed by

Harmur Englanna (The Sorrow of Angels),

centres around the ancient notion of the solitude of man, in

an Iceland made of fishermen and wind, and the tenuous

attachment to life. Because of this, man seeks friendship or

love, even though he realises that this is futile."

la Repubblica

Translated from Icelandic by Philip Roughton.