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Kristin Lavransdatter: (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition) by [Undset, Sigrid]
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Kristin Lavransdatter: (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition) Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Kindle Edition, 27 Sep 2005
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Length: 1168 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Language: English

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Product Description

"The finest historical novel our 20th century has yet produced; indeed it dwarfs most of the fiction of any kind that Europe has produced in the last twenty years."

-- Contemporary Movements in European Literature, edited by William Rose and J. Isaacs

"As a novel it must be ranked with the greatest the world knows today." -- Montreal Star

"Sigrid Undset's trilogy embodies more of life, seen understandingly and seriously... than any novel since Dostoievsky's Brothers Karamazov. It is also very probably the noblest work of fiction ever to have been inspired by the Catholic art of life." -- Commonweal

"No other novelist, past or present, has bodied forth the medieval world with such richness and fullness of indisputable genius.... One of the finest minds in European literature."

-- New York Herald Tribune

"This trilogy is the first great story founded upon the normal events of a normal woman's existence. It is as great and as rich, as simple and as profound, as such a story should be."

-- Ruth Suckow in the Des Moines Register

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 3560 KB
  • Print Length: 1168 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics (27 September 2005)
  • Sold by: Penguin US
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #114,613 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)

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An exceptional saga. Been out of print for decades. A fantastic holiday book to bury yourself in
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A wonderful saga, beautifully written. This is the second time I have read this.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 4.7 out of 5 stars 243 reviews
207 of 210 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kristin, I can't stop thinking about you 13 January 2008
By Darryl B. Hopkins - Published on
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Kristin Lavransdatter is the biggest literary surprise that ever engulfed me, as I read its 1,168 pages in three weeks on the subway, airplanes, theater auditoriums, nature trails, and anywhere else I could sneak in a few pages, the better to channel my way into Kristin's compelling, meticulously created and true-to-life world.

This story starts slowly, like a locomotive, but by the end it builds a staggering, devastating momentum that still swirls in my mind, months after finishing the novel for the second time.

If you like treason, torture, betrayal, drunken assaults, bar fights, sword fights, political intrigue, charging bears, brothels, plague, poison, suicide, damsels in distress, black magic, and human sacrifice, you'll find it in these pages.

And if you like stories of spiritual quests, coming of age and reflections from age, the bonds between fathers and daughters, and of mothers and sons, platonic love, unrequited love, doomed love, the joys of children, the inextinguishable anguish of burying children, the circle of life that never stops turning, and the most tender, heartbreaking passages I've ever read of the love between a mother and her child, you'll find even more of it in Kristin's life story.

And to all the smug reviewers who chastise Kristin and wish they could have just slapped some sense into her, I say this: can you really imagine that Kristin could have led her life any other way? My answer is this:

"All that happened and would happen was meant to be. Everything happens as it is meant to be." (p. 289, "The Cross")

Kristin is not a saint, but neither is she a cautionary tale. As long as we humans can love and live, we will love well, love madly and sometimes love foolishly, and we'll tell stories about it. And this story of Kristin is for me the truest love story ever told, and I will never forget her.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars See what an amazingly well ordered social structure where true charity abounds looks like, where rich and poor worked together 13 June 2015
By Mr. Randall Miller - Published on
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Buy this book! Read this book! Whatever one's modern political orientation this book presents the antidote for our modern morally poisoned times. See what an amazingly well ordered social structure where true charity abounds looks like, where rich and poor worked together, loved each other, took care of, and served each other. A society that created and fairly disbursed wealth without government interference, and in which Christianity worked towards human perfection against the forces of fallen man.See how forgiveness and civility helped society overcome temptation, and dealt with the inevitable lapses. Experience the benefice of a Christian Monarchy and the Church. Follow the life of a beautiful protagonist who struggles with and finally overcomes and conquers her youthful mistakes in love by her love of God. This is a masterpiece!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great historical fictional biography. 7 May 2016
By Aprime2 - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
An exceptional book of historical fiction that depicts a women's life from childhood to marriage and family to old age. A beautifully written book with such detail of exposition with keen observations of human behavior that were moving and relate to our time a century later. The picture of 14th century Norway reveals historical and political life but also personal relationships,social customs, class relationships and the role of religion and religious organizations during the period. Although lengthy, this version is more than worth the effort to read all three books included that cover Kristin's life story.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of my favorite books 14 January 2017
By catwoman - Published on
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I read this book in the early sixties in German. I think it was just the first book, called The Wreath. It was the first printing German from 1928 or thereabouts. The book totally drew me in. I read it on the bus, during lunch and in the evenings at home. Later, in the US, I got the other two books from the library. I always wanted to purchase the entire trilogy for myself, and I am glad I did. I find the book just as interesting as I did many years ago, and I think the reason is that the characters are so well developed and very real.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good historical detail, but slow-moving plot 18 July 2016
By Kathleen K. - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read a lot of historical fiction.This trilogy was recommended to me as the author won a Nobel prize for literature. It is well written and a very detailed and accurate portrayal of daily life in the Middle Ages in Norway. However, it is rather slow-paced, especially in the beginning. I eventually did become invested in the main character, however. Enough to read to the end of the trilogy, but I think most modern day readers would find it too slow-moving. Also, the historical accuracy with regards to character names may be confusing for English-speaking readers.
I should also like to add that, along with some other reviewers, I found the predilection of the main character to obsessively expound on how guilty she feels for past sins became tedious.