The highly anticipated third novel in a historical series that began with International Booker-shortlisted The Unseen
The journey had taken on its own momentum, it had become an autonomous, independent entity, she was searching for love, and was still happily unaware that truth is the first casualty of peace.
The war is over, and Ingrid Barrøy leaves the island that shares her name to search for the father of her daughter. Alexander, the Russian POW who survived the sinking of the Rigel, has attempted to cross the mountains to Sweden, and now Ingrid follows, carrying their child in her arms, the girl’s dark eyes and a handwritten note her only mementoes of their relationship. Along the way she will encounter partisans and collaborators, refugees and deserters, sinners and servants in a country still bearing the scars of occupation—and before her journey’s end, she’ll be forced to ask herself how well she really knows the man she’s risking everything to find.
Preceded by the International Booker Prize-shortlisted The Unseen and the critically acclaimed White Shadow, Eyes of the Rigel is an unforgettable odyssey and a captivating investigation of memory, guilt, and hope.
Praise for Eyes of the Rigel
“This delicate account of yearning perfectly caps the strong series.”—Publishers Weekly
“Eyes of the Rigel is a triumph of fearless storytelling and intense examination of the human condition.”—Open Book
“As finely as Jacobsen captured the heavy expanse of time in his depiction of a remote island and remote family that hadn’t changed in centuries, here his prose and storytelling is nimble and fleet, as free of the weight of Barrøy as Ingrid is … The lightness with which Eyes of the Rigel begins gradually becomes laden, the distance felt more, the weight of Ingrid’s child with the Russian growing heavier and heavier. From the outset, the Barrøy Chronicles have been concerned with how this island and its denizens are both a part of and apart from the wider world. Generational isolation and self-sufficiency carry with them their own mix of lightness and heaviness, as does incorporation, and this conflict is broad and alive in this third book.”—Andrew Hood, The Bookshelf
“Part of the beauty of this writing are the unexpected behaviors and the stoicism that had me rooting for Ingrid the entire book. You can read this series in any sequence you’d like, and I encourage you to give at least one title a try. I’m looking forward to what the next book reveals!”—Todd Miller, Arcadia Books
“[T]he life of Ingrid Barrøy is another Norwegian story not to be missed. Ingrid journeys to find the father of her child and what an adventure. Though difficulties abound the Norwegian spirit is indomitable! I love to read about these characters as they are made of strong stuff and conquer any hardship. And the landscape comes alive under the pen of this masterful storyteller. Great read!”—Stephanie Crowe, Page & Palette
Praise for The Barrøy Chronicles
“Richer, even more provocative … The heroine of Roy Jacobsen’s White Shadow knows every inch of her home turf, a tiny island off the coast of northern Norway that her people have inhabited for generations. To get a full sense of what it’s like to subsist on Barrøy and how 35-year-old Ingrid comes to be living there alone, it helps to read The Unseen, the first volume in Jacobsen’s trilogy, which has also been translated by Don Bartlett and Don Shaw. But even without that background, the novel’s account of Ingrid’s experience of World War II is unsettlingly easy to follow.”—New York Times
“White Shadow retains many of The Unseen’s pleasures, not least Jacobsen’s clean, spare prose … a noble tribute to the human struggle for decency.”—Daniel Marc Janes, Times Literary Supplement
“Disarmingly plainspoken narration brings into sharp relief both individuals and a world in wartime crisis.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“A powerful read.”—David Mills, Sunday Times
“The turbulent outside world laps at weathered, ancient shores in Jacobsen’s stunning follow-up to The Unseen (one of the great unsung masterpieces of last year) … In this elegant, sparse novel, every moment is laden with significance as its denizens teeter between brutal memory and resilient hope. This is a book to be savored.”—Buzzfeed
“A profound interrogation of freedom and fate, as well as a fascinating portrait of a vanished time, written in prose as clear and washed clean as the world after a storm.”—The Guardian
“The subtle translation, with its invented dialect, conveys a timeless, provincial voice … The Unseen is a blunt, brilliant book.”—Financial Times