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Out Stealing Horses
Out Stealing Horses
Author: Per Petterson, Anne Born (Translator)
In this quiet but compelling novel, Trond Sander, a widower nearing seventy, moves to a bare house in remote eastern Norway, seeking the life of quiet contemplation that he has always longed for. A chance encounter with a neighbor -- the brother, as it happens, of his childhood friend Jon -- causes him to ruminate on the summer of 1948, the last...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9780312427085
ISBN-10: 0312427085
Publication Date: 4/29/2008
Pages: 238
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.

3.5 stars, based on 198 ratings
Publisher: Picador
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed Out Stealing Horses on + 4 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 6
One review suggested that the main character here is really time. I concur. There are many layers in this coming of age story. Many people thought it was a "Man's story" because moments were described in depth, but feelings were not. Looking forward to hearing what others have to say!
tjnavrn avatar reviewed Out Stealing Horses on
Helpful Score: 6
Written by a reknown Norwegian author. Very descriptive of the surrounding and thoughts, but did not feel the characters were well developed, and female roles, with the exception of one were minimal and secondary. I concur that it is written for men. It is a coming of age and learning to accept lifes disappointments and challenges.
bouncy01 avatar reviewed Out Stealing Horses on + 26 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I can't say enough good about this book. I throughly enjoyed it!
dp avatar reviewed Out Stealing Horses on + 6 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
Lyrical and thought provoking. It reads like an onion, shifting back and forth in chronology with every shift peeling back a layer of time, recasting what we've already learned, and slowly revealing the full story of that pivotal summer. I wish the PBS book description didn't give away so much of the plot; the back cover blurb reveals much less and I think my experience of the book was the better for it.
reviewed Out Stealing Horses on
Helpful Score: 1
I enjoyed this book so much that I was able to overlook the fact that large portions of it are in the present tense, which is usually an abomination for me. The translation is so good that it seems as if the book had originally been written in English.
Read All 25 Book Reviews of "Out Stealing Horses"

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Cattriona avatar reviewed Out Stealing Horses on + 200 more book reviews
This was an interesting story with very descriptive writing -- you can really get a sense of the Norwegian countryside as you read -- which looks at the events of one man's youth from his perspective as an adult. The English translation is good, but it is a read which requires close attention, since the time frame can shift from the past to the present very readily.
hharris avatar reviewed Out Stealing Horses on + 46 more book reviews
This is historical fiction taking place in Norway during World War II and then again many years later. The subject matter is dark, but good. It depicts not an easy life in the countryside, but also shows the beauty too. The book goes back and forth from the present to the past (World War II), when the protagonist was a teenager. We are reading it for our book club book next month.
lectio avatar reviewed Out Stealing Horses on + 88 more book reviews
Set in an isolated corner of Norway, this haunting novel is as beautiful as it is melancholy. The story unfolds around a middle aged man (Trond)who has returned at the beginning of winter to a cabin he once lived in with his father because he needs to come to terms with something that has haunted him all his life, something that occurred when he and his father spent the summer there in 1948. And so the reader is gradually drawn into what Trond is remembering and the impact it has had on him. The author takes us back and forth between the present as Trond discovers that his nearest neighbor is actually the younger brother of Jon, Tronds strange boyhood friend with whom he used to go out stealing horses, and the things that actually took place that long ago summer. Gradually we discover what happened -- events that involved Tronds friendship with Jon and his family, as well as discoveries Trond was making about his own father. Its a poignant story but one that the reader must work hard at deciphering because Trond himself is very guarded and reticent when it comes to revealing whats going on inside him. Its as if the deeper his memories take him into the past, the harder he works at keeping himself from from betraying the impact they are having on him, and the feelings that go along with it. Instead he tries to skirt around them by paying an inordinate amount of attention to describing his surroundings, his rambles with his dog, his work getting the cabin in order for the winter, etc. Slowly the reader begins to realize how difficult it is for Trond to deal with what happened when he was a child and the deep sadness he has carried with him all his life. What I found most remarkable about this book is how adept the author was at letting us discover the depth of Tronds feelings even though Trond himself was so unable to articulate them.
reviewed Out Stealing Horses on + 12 more book reviews
This book is a very detailed account of an old man thinking back on one summer and living his present life. If you like that it is a good book. In many ways I felt I was reading someone's blog. And I never read blogs.

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