Unquiet: Book summary and reviews of Unquiet by Linn Ullmann

Unquiet

by Linn Ullmann

Unquiet by Linn Ullmann X
Unquiet by Linn Ullmann
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' rating:

     Not Yet Rated
  • Published in USA  Jan 2019
    288 pages
    Genre: Novels

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this book

Book Summary

Praised across Scandinavia as a "literary masterpiece," "spellbinding," and "magnificent," Unquiet reflects on six taped conversations the author had with her father at the very end of his life.

He is a renowned Swedish filmmaker and has a plan for everything. She is his daughter, the youngest of nine children. Every summer, since she was a little girl, she visits him at his beloved stony house surrounded by woods, poppies, and the Baltic sea. Now that she's grown up and he's in his late eighties, he envisions a book about old age. He worries that he's losing his language, his memory, his mind. Growing old is hard work, he says. They will write it together. She will ask the questions. He will answer them.

When she finally comes to the island, bringing her tape recorder with her, old age has caught up with him in ways neither could have foreseen.

Unquiet follows the narrator as she unearths these taped conversations seven years later. Swept into memory, she reimagines the story of a father, a mother, and a girl - a child who can't wait to grow up and parents who would rather be children.

A heartbreaking and darkly funny depiction of the intricacies of family, Unquiet is an elegy of memory and loss, identity and art, growing up and growing old. Linn Ullmann nimbly blends memoir and fiction in her most inventive novel yet, weaving a luminous meditation on language, mourning, and the many narratives that make up a life.

Read a Sample

Click to the right or left of the sample to turn the page.
(If no book jacket appears in a few seconds, then we don't have an excerpt of this book or your browser is unable to display it)

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Reviews

Media Reviews

"Starred Review. Echoing Duras's The Lover in its blurring of the real and the imagined as well as in its obsessive attention to detail, this is a striking book about the enduring love between parents and children, and the fierce attachments that bind them even after death." - Publishers Weekly

"Starred Review. Gorgeous and heartbreaking." - Kirkus

"Starred Review. To examine the soul of Ingmar Bergman, a man so private and so iconic, requires much deconstruction and reconstruction, not unlike the careful editing of a film. Ullman succeeds on every level, blending time, memory, and emotion into a fascinating and intimate portrait that easily evokes the universal sense of love and loss. Highly recommended." - Library Journal

"Unquiet is a wonderfully absorbing and moving family story told with a directness, naturalness, and grace that can only result from Linn Ullmann's close attention to the eloquent details of day-to-day life, her honest embrace of herself and the people close to her, and a keen sensitivity to language and the high demands of good writing." - Lydia Davis, author of The End of the Story

"I've long admired Linn Ullmann's fiction, and Unquiet is her masterpiece. Based on her upbringing as the child of two great artists, it is the portrait of complex loves; of a youth divided and inspired by diametrically opposed creative influences; and of the ravages of age. Calm yet fierce, exquisitely rendered, this novel imprints itself indelibly - as if you, too, had been there." - Claire Messud, author of The Burning Girl

"Ullmann moves deftly between narrative selves over time - from the little girl's raw bewilderments to the adult's reflective meditations. Unquiet is a beautiful book about the emotion and the art of memory." - Siri Hustvedt, author of The Blazing World

"With singular imagination and generosity, Linn Ullmann breaks new ground in the art of memory, transporting us into the sources of magic in her life with her enchanting parents." - Honor Moore, author of The Bishop's Daughter

The information about Unquiet shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Author Information

Linn Ullmann

Linn Ullmann is the author of six award-winning, critically acclaimed novels, and her work has been published in more than thirty languages. Her previous novel, The Cold Song, was a New York Times Notable Book. Unquiet has received multiple awards and spent more than a year on top of the of Scandinavian bestseller lists. In 2017, Ullmann was awarded the Dobloug Prize from the Swedish Academy for her body of work. She lives in Oslo with her husband and daughter.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

More Recommendations

Readers Also Browsed . . .

more novels...

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Smiling Man
    The Smiling Man
    by Joseph Knox
    Joseph Knox's latest turns on a simple premise: an unidentified and unidentifiable murdered man is ...
  • Book Jacket: The Heavens
    The Heavens
    by Sandra Newman
    I've been a big fan of Sandra Newman's writing ever since reading her 2014 novel The Country of Ice ...
  • Book Jacket: Sugar Run
    Sugar Run
    by Mesha Maren
    Mesha Maren's debut novel is a plunge into the depths of the dark Southern gothic with pulsing and ...
  • Book Jacket: Code Name Lise
    Code Name Lise
    by Larry Loftis
    Odette Sansom (1912 – 1995), a Frenchwoman married to a British man and living in the English ...

Book Club
Book Jacket
Girls Burn Brighter
by Shobha Rao

An extraordinary and heart-rending tale of two girls with all the odds against them.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

Book Club Giveaway!
Win The Summer Country

Win up to 12 copies to share with friends or your book club!

A sweeping epic of lost love, lies, jealousy, and rebellion set in colonial Barbados.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

D T T! Full S A!

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends the best in contemporary fiction and nonfiction—books that not only engage and entertain but also deepen our understanding of ourselves and the world around us.