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Silence in October

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  441 Ratings  ·  66 Reviews
After eighteen years of marriage, an art historian wakes up one morning to find his wife standing in the bedroom doorway with her bags packed, leaving him with no explanation. Alone in his Copenhagen apartment, he tries to make sense of his enigmatic marriage and life. Memories of driving a cab, quiet walks in the snow, and intense sojourns in Paris and New York pass throu ...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published October 5th 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (first published January 1st 1996)
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Jan 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Малко тържество на съзерцанието, мълчаливото вникване в детайлите и картинното възприемане на реалността. На интровертния вътрешен диалог, който изплита цялата книга. Присъствието на Едуард Хопър и творчеството му - за мен еманация на мълчанието и перцепцията на празното, заслужено е вмъкнато в разсъжденията и реминисценциите, с които главният герой разказвач тече. Това присъствие ми усили още повече насладата от книгата.
Позволявам си да вместя тук и цитатите, които ми направиха впечатление. От
Tsvetelina Mareva
Много, много ми хареса! Поетична, философска изповед за любовта, търсенията и самотата, предадена чрез богато нюансиран и чувствен език. Изящен превод на Ева Кънева!
Кремена Михайлова
Любовен живот.
Изобщо живот – рядко срещано честно, пълно и умело обрисуване.

„Най-накрая бях престанал да се питам дали съм щастлив.“
Jan 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A lovely, introspective, quietly beautiful novel. A man wakes to find that his wife of 18 years is leaving him. At first, you sympathize with him in his bewilderedness, then as the narrative of his life unfolds, you start to understand the reason behind the separation. Memory, the man finds, is a tricky thing. You can go your whole life believing that something that happened to you was "right" and "good." But when faced with an alternative path that becomes very viable, your whole life falls und ...more
Jun 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Обичам тихите книги, които оставят пространство за мислите да се разгръщат. Книгите, в които чуваш тишината около думите. Тишината на отсъствието, на настъпилата празнота, в която сякаш въздухът е запазил очертанията на любимия, но него самия го няма.

“Тишина през октомври” (изд. „Colibri“) е от онези романи, с които се “разбирам” още от самото начало. На 336 страници тече монолог, който нито за миг не доскучава. Вътрешен глас, оставил се на “потока на съзнанието”, ни води със забележително изяще
Kimberly Miller
Oct 10, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Having lived in Scandinavia, I've developed a taste, evidently, for cultures that are hard to crack; I'm always seeking out the work of new Scandinavian authors to fall in love with. I return to Peter Hoeg's Smilla's Sense of Snow over and over (I've even begun shopping around an essay I wrote on that one); no other contemporary Nordic prose writer has moved me nearly so much.

Until now...perhaps. I'm re-reading Jens Christian Grondahl's Silence in October; I read it for the first time about a ye
Jim Fonseca
An author's wife leaves him and his grown-up children just as he is getting ready to leave for New York on business. (The book is mainly set in Denmark and is translated from the Danish.) The author tracks his wife's movements by watching her credit card transactions on his computer and he discovers that she is re-tracing a trip to Portugal they took together years ago. That's basically the plot. The rest of the book is a wonderful introspection of the author's life as he reflects upon his life ...more
Много интелигентно написана книга. Деликатна, нежна, тиха. И ако до един момент симпатизирах на разказвача, чийто съпруга го е изоставила след 18-годишна връзка, то той постепенно започна да ми става антипатичен и дори да ме дразни. Темпото ми на четене драстично забави ход именно защото на няколко места книгата направо ми разби сърцето и просто имах нужда да си почина. И все пак - адски много харесвам женските персонажи в книгата. Обичам свободата им, дори свободата да изберат да не са моногамн ...more
Dolf Patijn
Dec 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
They say that something is always lost in translation. Unfortunately I can't read in Danish so I read this book in the Dutch translation. The translated version is so beautiful that I really wonder what it must be like in the original language. Of course, this is also meant as a compliment to the translator. I highly recommend this book and Jens Christian Grøndahl's work in general.

Er wordt gezegd dat er altijd wat in een vertaling verloren gaat. Jammergenoeg kan ik niet in het Deens lezen dus m
Jennie May
Sep 03, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A melancholy exploration of the innermost thoughts on life, decisions, how we see ourselves, love, dreams, desires, change and marriage. Slow and meandering it almost felt as though I were reading a diary. Really quite wonderful.
Мария Шикова
Много, много ми хареса! Въпреки привкуса на тъга и меланхолия, голямо удоволствие ми доставяше бавното четене, усещането ми всеки път бе едно и също - все едно сядах, завита в дебело и топло одеяло на стар фотьойл пред прозорец, дъждът вали тихо, вадичките от дъждовните капки баавно се стичат, светът зад прозореца е размазан, а аз ясно виждах и съзерцавах мислите на един мъж...
Книга за онези тихи моменти в които разговаряш със себе си, опознавайки се, връщайки се в миналото, правиш равносметк
Jan 28, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Šią ir kitas mano apžvalgas galima rasti čia:

Jenso Christiano Grondahlio romanas "Spalio tylėjimas" - toks gražus, kad vėliau net pasidaro nuobodu.

Tai intelektualus romanas apie vienatvę dviesę. Pagrindinį veikėją netikėtai palieka žmona, o tai puiki proga jam apmąstyti savo gyvenimą, santuoką, ryšius su kitomis moterimis ir šeima.

"Visus tuos metus, kai buvome šeima, ir dabar, vaikams pradėjus veržtis iš jos rato, judėjome kartais pagal nervingą, kartais
Nick Schroeder
Jul 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I came to this book by way of "Out Stealing Horses" because that was so well translated that I looked for other books by the translator, Anne Born. This is an excellent book in which the main character, a man, examines his life in light of his wife leaving him unexpectedly. Anne Born's rewriting of Grondahl's novel is excellent in the extreme. I've only read this once but intend to reread it.
Oct 13, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
Life changing... beautiful in parts, ugly in parts.
Mar 18, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the category of narrators you come to hate
Gergana Gencheva
It is a most honest book, a great one. As if written for me and for all wondering people my age. It is full of searching, love hope and forgiveness. For me personally, it is full of wisdom.
Apr 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: northern-europe
An art historian wakes up one morning to find Astrid, his wife of eighteen years, with a coat on and a suitcase in her hand. She turns and leaves without saying a word. Melancholy and meditative by nature, the narrator looks back on his life and ponders his relationships with his children, parents, friends, and old lovers. His memories form a series of stories, meandering back and forth in time as he tries to attend to his book on the New York School of painting. But his past haunts him, especia ...more
Jacqueline Wagenstein
Романът „Тишина през октомври“ получава изключително висока оценка както от страна на читателите, така и от критиката. Преводът на българското издание е в актива на Ева Кънева.

„Тишина през октомври“ е въздействащ интроспективен разказ за любовта, изолацията и надеждата, за преоценката на миналото и опитите за самоидентификация, за сложните отношения в рамките на двойката и различните схващания за предаността. Авторът следва и разширява традиционния за скандинавската литература дискурс за брака,
Jun 01, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I just finished reading The Pilot's Wife, by Anita Shreve, and I think had I not read it first, I would've enjoyed this book much more. Although the specific events leading to the main characters' situations are different, the end result is the same: they are alone.

In The Pilot's Wife, Kathryn's husband dies in a plane crash, leaving her with many unanswered questions, the most important of which is how well did she really know her husband? In Silence in October, the main character wakes up one
Apr 23, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jens Christian Grondahl's stunning Silence in October could easily have been an embarrassingly mawkish trawl through the psyche of an artistic man in midlife crisis.
In fact, it is a hugely moving investigation into the nature of conversation, art and relationships.

The unnamed narrator is a Danish art critic who wakes one day to find his wife on her way out of the door; she looks at him as he rouses, tells him that she will be away for a while, and then leaves. His children have also only recentl
Oct 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Grondahl has a masterful way with words and an insightful talent for telling the story that happens between the mind and the emotions.

What is love? How do you know when you have it? When you feel? How do you know when you've lost it? This is the story of one man's attempts to discover these answers and his several failures to recognize love and hold onto it; his failure to understand when to let it go. This is also a story that displays intuitive and profound insights into the vast differences b
Jul 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love grown up love stories and this one is written by someone with a deep understanding of love's vicissitudes. Grondahl pulls no punches - this is a novel about flawed people. For all that the narrator appears intelligent and thoughtful, he knows (as we do) that 'love loves without a reason', that even those we love and live with may retain a mysterious core, that we may never truly fathom their motivations. What the novel illuminates so beautifully is one man's attempt to honestly describe l ...more
Jun 06, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, translated
Geen hoogvlieger, dit boek. Grøndahl kan een aardig stukje proza schrijven en zin per zin gelezen is dit een mooi werkstuk. Maar in zijn geheel maakt het op mij een quasi-onuitstaanbare, valse, voze, en navelstaarderige indruk. Ik had de protagonist omwille van zijn lafhartigheid en narcisme een klap in zijn gezicht willen geven. Dit verhaal bezwijkt onder zijn eigen pretentie. Er zit geen sikkepit authenticiteit in, geen voorwaarts momentum, geen heldere contour. In de plaats wordt de lezer ove ...more
Nancy Jurss
Mar 29, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of those books that I found difficult to read at first as I could not relate to the main character. His passivity was not something I had sympathy for. But as I continued to read I found myself drawn in more and more, reminding me that I don't have to like every character to like the book. It's hard to say "enjoy the book" when I found it mildly depressing to see this man just living his life instead of LIVING his life. I got the impression that his early childhood experiences caused ...more
Sep 15, 2007 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who don't mind if little actually happens in a book.
Silence in October tells the story of a forty-something art historian whose wife suddenly goes on a long holiday without him, unannounced. Unsure of whether she has actually left him, and if so, why, the man starts sifting through his memories, remembering their life together and away from each other and meditating on the meaning of, well, pretty much everything. Very little actually happens in the book; it's mostly a stroll down Memory Lane. Introspective, meditative and more than a little self ...more
Oct 22, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to sisterimapoet by: Mew
Shelves: fiction-2011
I wasn't sure what to expect from this, especially when I opened it and saw how nearly every page was packed with dense unbroken prose, little conversation. But the reading experience did not feel dense. The narrator moved me skillfully through time and space to escort me through his ponderings. Grondahl has perfectly captured the ways our minds work, how we go over and over things to try to make sense of them, how one memory inevitably has hooks into another. I felt like I could have read this ...more
Sep 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Prachtig geschreven, langzame vertelling van een man die terugdenkt aan zijn leven en de ontwikkeling van zijn relatie met zijn vrouw. Geen makkelijk boek, zeker niet omdat het soms pagina's lange stortvloeden aan (levens)vragen zijn die de hoofdstukken vormen. Sommige stukken lijken erg op andere boeken van Grøndahl, zoals 'Portret van een man'. Zijn stijl bevalt mij wel, zijn beschrijvingen roepen vaak herkenbaarheid bij mij op. Voor wie het contempleren niet schuwt is dit een erg fijn, mooi b ...more
Douglas Cosby
Oct 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Story about a husband/dad whose wife causally leaves after their kids are out of the house. Very slow, no real plot; however, some brilliant insight and descriptions of mundanity -- the real essence of day-to-day life. Even though I ended up really liking this book, it would be hard to recommend. I think I was in the right place to appreciate it, but if I was 10 years younger or didn't have kids, it would not have worked.
Karan Singh
Whole sections of this work are interminably tedious, a point recognised by the narrator towards the end. Grondahl (sorry this software won't allow me the Danish o with the diagonal) uses style to mimic the suffocation of a long, bourgeois relationship. A lot of words are pressed into service to illustrate their worthlessness.

I couldn't help feeling it's all been done before; and, sparing Grondahl's blushes, done much better. No one beats Kierkegaard for true Danish soul-searching.
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Jens Christian Grøndahl is one of the most celebrated and widely read authors in Europe today. He has written plays, essays, and eleven novels. The publication of Silence in October marks Grøndahl's U.S. debut. His novel Lucca was awarded the prestigious Golden Laurels Prize in 1999. He lives in Copenhagen.


Kvinden i midten - 1985
Syd for floden - 1986
Rejsens bevægelser - 1988
Det i
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“Sometimes I think you take photographs instead of seeing, you forget to look in your eagerness to grasp what is seen, to capture it in time's flight. You are absent from your own pictures, not only because you took them yourself, but also because you betray the moments you want to save from oblivion.” 7 likes
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