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A Blessed Child

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3.42 of 5 stars 3.42  ·  rating details  ·  194 ratings  ·  22 reviews
A Blessed Child is a haunting parable of innocence lost from the internationally acclaimed author of Grace and Stella Descending.

Every summer Isak Lövenstad gathers his three daughters by different wives to the windswept Baltic island of Hammarsö. Here Erika, Laura, and Molly find a sense of family and friendship, although nothing can match Erika's connection to the rebell
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Paperback, 320 pages
Published August 11th 2009 by Anchor (first published January 1st 2005)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 344)
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Oceana2602
Sometimes you can tell by the writing where the author of a books come from. Is that just me? Russian books often have that endless feeling, sad, slow, cruel and limitless. British books are rainy (come on, have you ever read a British book where rain hasn't been mentioned at least once?). This book is norwegian, and, well, I haven't read many Norwegian books yet, but I've been to Norway, and this book certainly felt "norwegian" to me.
Whatever that means.

Wait, that means that is moves in a very
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Laura
What does the author mean by "and he was Isak's heel"? (referring to Ragnar) Glad the story comes full circle back to Erika and the snowy night. Liked the sister's adult stories and some of the island stories, but the other island girls (and the way Erika was when with them)were just too horrible for words, mean, manipulative, self-centered, flippant, cruel.
Tory
Most of this book takes place on a remote island in the Baltic Sea. I really liked the writing which is very beautiful, very moody. The characters are unique and kind of fascinating and the author moves the story to its inevitable crescendo in a skillful and engaging way.
Jessica
Mainly set on a Swedish island during consecutive summers of the narrators' girlhoods. Like peeking into a dollhouse. Lovely descriptions, lovely writing. A bit dark, despite the endless northern sun.
Christina
Longlisted for the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize, A Blessed Child had me for the first 100 pages and then it just sort of teetered off from there. The reader doesn’t actually find out why the three sisters, Erika, Laura, and Molly, stop visiting Hammarsö, a tiny island in the Baltic Sea, when Erika was 14 until around page 218, and even then the story refuses to confront the problem, choosing instead to continue with the flashbacks.

The story begins, though, with the eldest daughter, Erika, t
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Miki
Un romanzo ambientato in un'isola svedese dove i protagonisti trascorrono le estati. Tre sorelle (padre in comune, madri diverse) passano lí infanzia e preadolescenza, facendo amicizia con altre ragazze e ragazzi, rapporti pervasi da gelosie e angherie, fino a vero e proprio bullismo e violenza. I pochi rapporti di affetto vengono tenuti segreti e persino rinnegati per egoismo e paura del giudizio altrui, fino alla tragedia che segna la fine delle estati insieme nell'isola. Il ritorno delle sore ...more
Marina
I think this is the best book i've read until now. The story is thrilling, the characters are beautifully designed and felt so real.
This is not a mystery book - you will find out what happend in the past, but if you want closure, you may be disappointed
Susan
Three daughters by different mothers, decide to visit their semi-estranged father. The story is told from the the view points of each daughter. What would be most interesting would be the visit but the author never gets us there.
Esther
Une histoire des trois filles, demi-sœurs du même père, qui se revoient pendant quelques années chaque été pour des vacances sur une ile.

Il y a des drames de familles et des drames entre adolescents, mais aussi beaucoup de tendresse, de l’amour, des façons de vivre hors du commun. Tout cela dans le cadre de légèreté des étés scandinaves sur une ile superbe et plein de nature intégrée, des vacances scolaires, de la naïveté de jeunesse et avec une certaine innocence.

Une histoire lente et tranquill
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Laura
Fantastic! new favorite author.
Dennis George
A wonderful story....great writing.
wmc
Beautiful and heartbreaking story about a man and his various children. The author weaves through the different POVs relentlessly, steadily, elliptically, and she turns the "coming home" storyline into something magical, sharp, dreamlike, and devastating most of all.
Stephanie
Eh. Another atmospheric book about a character returning to the scene of a tragedy, though the tragedy is second to the drama of the family. A lot was left unsaid, and I wanted it to be said. The whole thing left me cold.
Marita
Very Scandinavian, artsy and straight forward in a vague way. Really 2,5 is more accurate I was so mad about how those girls behaved!!! Beautiful summer childhood passes to miserably cold and lonely winter adulthood.
Theresa

Beautiful and very Swedish film-like portrayal of one summer in the lives of three sisters, when the eldest is 14. Wonderfully crafted with no unnecesssary parts. Haunting.


John
Feb 13, 2009 John rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: All
Recommended to John by: Oprah?
I read it all but didn t like the ending--I was hoping all three women would finally come together with their biological father--it ended when they were almost there--darn.
Stephen
was disappointed with this book had so much potenial but the author lost her way with the plot and in the end you didn't really feel anything for the characters
Allienew
a lot of nothing occurred in this book and exploitive childhood traumas with no resolutions, but maybe that's the point?
Ida
En godt skrevet bok, men slutten er litt brå og levner for mange spørsmål ubesvart.
Veldig god beskrivelse av oppvekst.
Kat
Probably a good book, but just couldn't get into it..
Mervi
suomeksi: Siunattu lapsi
Terje
"Õnnistatud laps" in Estonian
Christina Jensen
Christina Jensen is currently reading it
Apr 26, 2015
Lucas Bierlein
Lucas Bierlein marked it as to-read
Apr 16, 2015
Shelly Leyden
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Mar 23, 2015
Ingvild Langelid
Ingvild Langelid marked it as to-read
Mar 23, 2015
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Linn Ullmann is the daughter of actress, author and director Liv Ullmann and director and screenwriter Ingmar Bergman.

She is a graduate of New York University, where she studied English literature. She returned to Norway in 1990 to pursue a career in journalism.
Her first novel Before You Sleep was published in 1998. Her second novel, Stella Descending (2001) received glowing reviews. Her third no
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More about Linn Ullmann...
The Cold Song Before You Sleep Stella Descending Grace Dierbaar

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