A Change of Time by Ida Jessen, translated from the Danish by Martin Aitken / ISBN 9781939810175 / 240-page paperback with flaps from Archipelago / discounted copies in nice condition (remainder dot, light wear)
A Change of Time pieces together the life of a schoolteacher after her husband, the town doctor, passes away. Set in rural Denmark in the early 20th century, the narrator’s journal entries form an intimate portrait of a woman rebuilding her identity. Her thoughts unravel in sudden bursts, followed by quiet meditation or the rhythmic passing of days. She writes, “Memory is like a sieve. Everything runs through it,” and indeed Ida Jessen’s prose conveys the constant feeling of falling through a sieve, shaking each thought for its secret meaning. With a clear, unerring voice, the narrator gives the reader room to think and breathe. Ida Jessen’s every phrase swells with warmth and tenderness, turning over our deepest desires.
“A masterpiece of the epistolary novel told in diary entries . . . beautifully translated . . . deeply felt”—from an award-winning and bestselling Danish novelist (Bookforum)