Jennifer Egan and Finn Skårderud
Whenever there is a new novel from the hands of American Jennifer Egan, you may ask yourself what it is she has come up with this time. Through her critically acclaimed body of wok, she has surprised readers with every book, changing project, genre and style completely. Her last novel, A Visit from the Goon Squad, played with punk rock and became a huge success, awarded the Pulitzer Prize, among other things. With her new novel, Manhattan Beach, translated into Norwegian by Kyrre Haugen Bakke, she enters the historical crime story, the Great Depression and the second world war, with characteristics from the noir fiction landscape.
The perspective alternates between the novel’s two protagonists: the night club owner mafioso Dexter Styles, who runs his empire with an iron fist, keeping his fishy business away from his impeccable family façade. And the young Anna Kerrigan, who lives up to traditional expectations at home with her mother, where she helps care for her sister Lydia, but who seeks out new challenges outside the home and in her work, while wondering about her father’s abrupt disappearance.
Anna gets a job at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, a job that no woman would have held before the war. As part of a large war machine, she measures tiny components used in shipbuilding, but yearns to become a diver and repair ships underwater.
Egan will meet writer and psychiatrist Finn Skårderud for a conversation about how she has come under the skin of war time society in America, painting intimate portraits of people living in a time before she herself was born.
The conversation will be held in English.