Hansen, Erik Fosnes

(1965-)
   A Norwegian novelist, Fosnes Hansen had his literary debut with Falketarnet (1985; The Falcon Tower), a historical novel set at the time ofthe crusades. The protagonist is the young son ofa knight. Wolfgang, who understands the language of birds and is happy only when in the company of his four hunting falcons, is portrayed through his relationship to Suzanne, the daughter of an executioner, and to his power-hungry and evil uncle. The book is well written and has an exciting story line, and the critics marveled that it was produced by someone who was only 19 years old. Fosnes Hansen's next novel, Salme ved reisens slutt (1990; tr. Psalm at Journey's End, 1996), tells the life stories of seven musicians who are on board the Titanic at the time of its sinking. All of them have had difficulties coping with life, and their individual fates are portrayed with great sensitivity and an impressive breadth of perspective on Western culture at the time of its transition into modernity.
   In Beretninger om beskyttelse (1998; tr. Tales of Protection, 2002), Fosnes Hansen also uses the technique of linking several stories together and presenting them within a frame. Each of the book's four major sections contains several shorter narratives. Set at the end of the 20th century, the frame story presents the disembodied thoughts of the recently deceased industrialist and engineer Wilhelm Boldt, whose body is about to be cremated. Bolt is also the protagonist of the first story, which tells about his retirement years as a bitter old man. He likewise figures prominently in the fourth story, which is set in Asia during World War II, but which also contains a long segment of retrospective narration that gives the background for his bitterness by describing his boyhood and early manhood. Set in 1897, the second section takes place at a lighthouse on an island in the Baltic Sea. The third and longest section takes place in Renaissance Italy during the years shortly before 1500. Through these various stories, the book discusses the idea of serialization, the notion that apparently random events are connected in some manner. One of the finest Norwegian stylists of his generation, Fosnes Hansen has also written Underveis: Et Portrett av Prinsesse Martha Louise (2003; En Route: A Portrait of Princess Martha Louise).

Historical Dictionary of Scandinavian Literature and Theater. . 2006.

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  • Erik Fosnes Hansen — (born June 6 1965 in New York) is a Norwegian author. He made his debut at age twenty with the novel Falketårnet . His most famous work is his second novel, Psalm at Journey s End , which in separate but steadily more interwoven stories follows… …   Wikipedia

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