This site was created for people interested in the work (and life) of Halldór Laxness, the greatest Icelandic author of the 20th century. Because information in English about the work of this author can be hard to find, this site was created to bring together reviews, essays, photos, video clips, and related links in one location. A separate section is devoted to each book, as well as sections on other aspects of Halldor’s career. New material will be added from time to time. This site can help keep information from being lost due to ‘link-rot’ (and we've lost a fair bit already!) The essays posted here are used by permission. Images should be all fair use- if any are not, let us know.
Use the links listed in the sidebar to access material about the above titles and other topics.
The celebrated Icelandic author Halldór Laxness wrote many novels, essays, plays and stories in his long career. Those of us not empowered with a fluency in Icelandic are limited to the books listed in this site; most are readily available although Salka Valka and The Happy Warriors are extremely difficult to find and are only available in English from translations from Swedish and Danish. Translation is an art form in itself; any final judgment concerning the English versions of these books can be left to experts (although you are welcome to state your opinion!) Icelandic is a very precise language and English has a lot of Icelandic “DNA” in its structure and vocabulary (from its roots in Old Norse) which should allow for a good conversion. That said, however, those of us who are not native Icelanders will miss many of the cultural references in these books. Conversely, reading Laxness exposes us to many facets of Icelandic history, culture and psychology. It has been written that Laxness has done more to shape the Icelandic sense of national identity than any other author has for any other culture. This site was created with the intent of broadening an appreciation of the depth of this unique author’s work, particularly with first-time readers.
If you have original material (reviews, corrections, essays, appreciations, travel stories, etc.,) about Halldór Laxness or his works, leave a comment (with a link, if possible), We'll be glad to consider incorporating it into these pages.
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