Hundehoved
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Hundehoved

3.75 of 5 stars 3.75  ·  rating details  ·  961 ratings  ·  110 reviews
Chased by bloodhounds on a German plain after escaping from a Nazi concentration camp, Askild is a painter, a murderer and a thief.

His son, Niels “Jug Ears” Junior, uses dynamite to blow up the privy when his father sells his cherished coin collection.

Grandson Asger fears dogs coming out of the walls, and can’t stop obsessing about the space under the stairs. He is haunted...more
Paperback, 382 pages
Published 2005 by Gyldendal
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(showing 1-30 of 1,531)
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Bill
you know how in american movies...most, not all, something has to be happening all the time...things blowing up, slapstick comedy,megan fox running etc. whereas in most of the european movies i've seen, nothing overly exciting happens at all. in many of the films the vast majority of the time is taken up with people just talking to each other. in other words, they are primarily character studies.

well such is the case with doghead, which is a european book, written in denmark where it won many li...more
·Karen·
8 CDs ready for us to listen to on the next road trip.

Which we did, stuck in slow moving traffic through the Alps, stuck in the queue to get through the ticket machines at the Brenner pass, stuck in the traffic around Stuttgart, cruising the autobahn past Koblenz and Cologne.

I'm not very good at listening to books, it turns out. I got on much better when I found a printed insert in the box with the family tree of the Svenssons and the Peterssons, and could check on who these people were in relat...more
Clare
I guess it says something about me that I was surprised when I read the flyleaf of this book and saw that it was described as a story about "a wildly dysfunctional Norwegian family." I didn't think they were all that dysfunctional - it's just that the author describes their dysfunction in such a mesmerizing way. Of course, my own family would never be the poster family for functional.
Ramsland weaves his story back and forth in time so that we begin to understand what makes each character signif...more
Thomas
The most fantastic Danish read I have ever read! Highly recommended for any man trying to remember how it was being a boy and any boy trying to figure out what it means to grow up...
Lars K Jensen
Dette er en af de største positive litterære overraskelser, jeg har været ude for. For det er herligt at læse stor litteratur, som man ved, er fantastisk - men nogle gange skal man tage fat i den bog på reolen, som vennerne har talt om (syv af mine Goodreads-venner har læst den og giver den fire i gennemsnit), og som man har hørt så meget godt om.

Så det gjorde jeg - og jeg blev i den grad imponeret over, hvordan Ramsland får fortalt en historie om en families slægtshistorie. Det er ikke fordi, h...more
Charles Matthews
Happy families, as Tolstoy noted, are so much alike that they make for dull fiction. It's dysfunction we want. And in his first novel to be published in English, the Danish writer Morten Ramsland has served up a smörgåsbord of dysfunction.

As the novel's narrator, Asger Eriksson (aka The Liar, The Latchkey Kid, The Bastard Boy, The Danish Shrimp, and The Bandit), notes at one point in his saga of three generations of his family, “There was Anne Katrine, who was robbed of her mother's love. There...more
Jeanne
Mar 19, 2009 Jeanne rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Jeanne by: PW
Shelves: scandinavian
Where do I begin? This novel is translated from the Danish, and the author has been compared to John Irving. Are you tempted yet?

At first, I didn’t see the comparison to Irving, but the more I read, the more I got it. In essence, this is the story of a family. But not just any family. This is a wacky Norwegian family.

Narrated by Asger Erikkson, the novel tells the story of his parents, his grandparents, and Asger himself. We also learn about his great-grandparents. So, it’s a family saga. But i...more
Chris
I picked this book up simply because of the cover and the title. I hadn't heard anything about it before picking it up.


It's really, really good.


I've read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and Smilla's Sense of Snow over the past year and noticed a striking similiarity between the two heroines. it was refreshing to read a book that doesn't stick to that female character.

Doghead is a family history as well as a slight tragedy and very funny. The story starts at the end of World war II and continues...more
Simon Dykins
Sorry, but we have to refer to Tolstoy again. To paraphrase, all happy families are alike (and dull), but all dysfunctional families are unhappy in their own unique (and often very amusing) way, and this very dysfunction, and, indeed unhappiness, brings them together. Here is a story (or, rather, a collection of stories, some of which are actually true), told by an unreliable narrator, of three generations of nomadic Scandinavians,jumping back and forth through time, moving from POW camps in 194...more
Martin
Wow - I REALLY REALLY liked this book! It is most definitely 4.5 stars. All of the newly translated Nordic fiction I'm getting my hands on is really satisfying!!

This is a multi-generational family story told from a male point of view. There is a lot of family dysfunction, troubling childhood experiences, love, loss and, did I mention, a healthy dose of family dysfunction? This one teeters right on the edge of absurd but never really crosses the line. It really held my attention from page one unt...more
Clayton H
This is a family saga that is very well written and actually worth the time. If the thought of an intricate generational journey is the kind of book that might be a turn off, well, I was sceptical too. But if you let Askild and Bjork take you on their quirky 50 year roadtrip of a Nordic cum Danish dynasty where alcohol, dynamite, dog-shit on a stick and cubist art regularly appear you'll discover echoes of your own family, and dare I say it: yourself.
Kathy
A very good story of a man who tries to figure out the truth about and make sense of three generations of family history, discovering maybe more than he ever wanted to know (even about himself). Funny, but kind of dark in places which made me like it even more. Of course the families were all dysfunctional, but with a more European spin. Translated from Danish.
Harpa Dis
Verulega óaðlaðandi kápa og ég átti ekki von á neinu sérstöku þegar ég byrjaði að lesa hana. Hefði aldrei lesið hana ef ég hefði ekki verið skikkuð til þess í Lestrarfjelaginu Skruddurnar.

Söguþráðurinn er fínn, en mér fannst stundum erfitt að fylgja honum eftir, um hvern var verið að fjalla hverju sinni. Framsetningin svolítið tætingsleg.

Ginisez
being 1/2 norwegian from the Bergen area this book intrigued me. what a read! Its a family history told in different voices at different times, in there history. I did need to keep checking the family tree to keep everyone straight. they all go by various childhood and adult nicknames. all I can say is Yes!! a great read.
Geraldine
Pages 1-50: "I love this book! Wacky adventures, quirky characters, distinctive writing style! I am moving to Norway!"

Pages 50-100: "Didn't I just read 50 pages of wacky adventures?"

Page 102: "Life is too short. This book is going back to Scandinavia in the morning."
Lars
Dette er en af de st��rste positive litter��re overraskelser, jeg har v��ret ude for. For det er herligt at l��se stor litteratur, som man ved, er fantastisk - men nogle gange skal man tage fat i den bog p�� reolen, som vennerne har talt om (syv af mine Goodreads-venner har l��st den og giver den fire i gennemsnit), og som man har h��rt s�� meget godt om.

S�� det gjorde jeg - og jeg blev i den grad imponeret over, hvordan Ramsland f��r fortalt en historie om en families sl��gtshistorie. Det er ik...more
yexxo
Kaum vorstellbar - ein Acht-Stunden-Hörspiel und dennoch wünscht man sich nach der letzten CD, es möge nochmal so lange dauern.
Eine Familiengeschichte über drei Generationen, erzählt vom Jüngsten der Familie, Asger Eriksson, der nach sieben Jahren in Amsterdam kurz vor dem Tod seiner Großmutter nach Hause zurückkehrt, um ihr diesen Wunsch zu erfüllen. Eine Geschichte voll von Tragik, Absurdität, Grausamkeit, Freude undundund, ach, einfach allem.
Da gibt es Großvater Askild, der mit seiner Krieg...more
Mebhe
" Entre Norvège et Danemark, des années trente à nos jours, ce récit cocasse célèbre la famille, pour le meilleur comme pour le pire."



Tête de chien, c'est le surnom du narrateur (Asger, de son vrai nom) qui raconte l'histoire de sa famille, transbahutée entre la Norvège et le Danemark.



Tout commence par le grand-père Askild, échappé d'un camp de concentration en Allemagne, en échange de la vie d'un autre. Un passé dont ce grand-père, alcoolique notoire et peintre cubiste à ses heures, ne se reme...more
Lanew-yorkaise
From http://lanew-yorkaise.com/

“Somewhere in Eastern Germany, my grandfather Askild is running across an open plain. The Germans are after him, and he has lost one of his shoes; it’s freezing. The half moon casts a pale glow over the landscape, transforming it into a ploughed field with frozen soldiers partly buried in mud….My father has not yet been born. My grandmother Bjork, who had arrived too late at the prison in Oslo and therefore never got to say goodbye, is not yet married to Grandpa A...more
Øystein Bjaanes
The first thirty-fourty pages of this novel had me wondering whether I'd finish it or not. After that, the reading went easily, and I finished it in two sittings.

My reason for wondering was that Hundehode is a family chronicle, and I feel like I've read too many of those. Also, the first pages were not all that promising, they did not manage to build much excitement. Neither did they convey a sense that this book was anything out of the ordinary.

Once I got into the book, however, reading was a b...more
Ishmael Seaward
Very entertaining. Three generations of a dysfunctional family. I have known some dysfunctional families here in the states and read about others. This family seems dysfunctional in a subtlely different sort of way; maybe it's the culture. Like the kid bicycling through the city blindfolded, with his girlfriend runnning behind giving him directions. Or the mentally challenged grossly overweight aunt who quite literally tries to smother her nephew with her weight when he tries to escape her clutc...more
Leraymer
Just finished reading this book for my bookgroup. It is written by a Danish author and received a lot of hype and buzz in the reviews. I felt that the book fell short of the reviews but overall it was a worthwhile read. It is a story of a 3 generation dysfunctional Norwegian family. I thought the book was going to be funny, edgy, raucous, unconventional, a new twist on an old theme - family dysfunction. In actuality I found the book to be typical of many books I've read about dysfunctional famil...more
Mazel
Nous, on aimerait vraiment savoir comment il a survécu, pour être franc, on aimerait vachement le savoir. On voudrait savoir comment il s'en est sorti, ce qui explique que moi, le plus jeune, et ma soeur Stinne, l'aînée, nous sommes venus au monde.

Mais Grand-Père se referme comme une huître et descend du schnaps. Il refuse de raconter ce que les Allemands lui ont fait. "La peste ou le choléra", dit-il à la place.

" Entre Norvège et Danemark, des années trente à nos jours, ce récit cocasse célèb...more
Claudia
E' la saga di una famiglia norvegese raccontata da uno dei due eredi più giovani, Asger, partendo dalle vicissitudini del nonno Askild. Quest'ultimo è un giovane ingegnere che grazie alla sua aura di mistero riesce a conquistare nonna Bjork per poi mettere al mondo tre figli uno più sfigato dell'altro: Niels, padre del narratore e di Stinne (poveretta anche lei...), Anne Katrine, zia ritardata, e Knut, il figlio ribelle che a soli 13 anni s'imbarcherà come marinaio per un destino che crede migli...more
Hege
For years, Asger Erikkson, the narrator of Ramsland's funny and touching novel, has struggled to keep his family history buried. But when Asger is called home to Denmark to the deathbed of his beloved Grandma Bjørk, the stories spill forth, out of order and out of control. First, they summon long-suppressed guilt (Asger caused his grandfather, who survived Buchenwald, to collapse by tricking him into drinking urine, for instance) and then spiral outward, filling in the many blanks from three gen...more
Sunbern
“Somewhere in Eastern Germany, my grandfather Askild is running across an open plain. The Germans are after him, and he has lost one of his shoes; it’s freezing. The half moon casts a pale glow over the landscape, transforming it into a ploughed field with frozen soldiers partly buried in mud….My father has not yet been born. My grandmother Bjork, who had arrived too late at the prison in Oslo and therefore never got to say goodbye, is not yet married to Grandpa Askild. Officially they’re not ev...more
Janne Paananen
Koiranpää on kovin erikoinen sukuromaani. Siinä seurataan useamman sukupolven ajan yhden suvun elämää Tanskassa ja Norjassa. Pääsääntöisesti kirja kulkee ajallisesti kronologisessa järjestyksessä, mutta välillä sivujuonteissa palataan menneisiin tapahtumiin. Kirja tuntuukin kokonaisuutena aavistuksen sekavalta. Osittain juuri näistä ajallisista pomppimista johtuen. Suvun henkilögalleria on kohtuullisen mielenkiintoinen ja tällaisessa pitkäaikaisessa seurannassa syitä ja seurauksia ehtii hahmotta...more
Thais
La saga di una famiglia fra Danimarca e Norvegia, tra personaggi buffi, tragedie, fughe e tradimenti, raccontata dall'ultimo della stirpe. Ognuno dei personaggi, dal nonno Askild al giovane Asger, passando per zii, cugini, fratelli, genitori così via, ha una storia particolare che merita di essere raccontata. Tocca al più giovane tirare le fila di tutte le vicende, e sono proprio le storie a tenere unita questa famiglia così buffa. Si va avanti e indietro dagli anni Trenta al presente, in una fo...more
Astrid
Ok, 4.75. I deduct for the abundance of bodily fluids in this book. This book will not appeal to everyone. You must have a sense of humor, of the quirky kind, to be able to appreciate this book. This is textbook dysfunctional family, Scandinavian style. An acquired taste, like lutefisk. But the book was just wonderful in the way it depicted the characters and kept surprising me. I had to chuckle on several occasions and just imagining the scene with Knut and the mom and the kitchen table present...more
e
This feels more like text from a history book rather than a novel. Not the sort you read in school, but the sort with disturbingly hilarious and in-depth character portrayals ; and the scandalous secrets and atrocities those characters face...if such a history book exists.
It is the fate,future, and present of this fictional family that kept me turning the pages, and brought them to life. Though dysfunctional,I came to love them all , and identify with them. As a peering outsider, I felt very pr...more
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dark humor 1 17 Mar 04, 2009 03:22PM  
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