The Journey Home

The Journey Home

by Olaf Olafsson, Olafsson Olaf

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Journey Home 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
Whisper1 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
This is not a gut wrenching, page turner. This is not a fast paced emotional story.This is a poetic, marvelous tale of Disa who recently received word that she has a year to live thus prompting her to travel back home to Iceland.Living in the English countryside, managing a lovely bed and breakfast, Disa is content with her life. The author paints a calm, aesthetic portrait of flowers and rolling hills, of food prepared well, of clean, quiet restful rooms and a tranquil lifestyle.Leaving her well-defined comfortable environment, traveling by ship affords Disa time to reflect on her life as she slowly approaches her destination.Her memories flicker and, even though some events experienced were painful, we observe her life as through a panoply of color where patterns change and shift and the kaledscope turns prismatic with each tiny nudge.We are taken back to WWII and Nazi occupation of Europe, of Disa's Jewish lover, of her mother's disapproval of her career and choice of partner, of friendships made and friendship lost, of events out of her control and then, of choices intentionally made.Highly recommended.
MoniqueReads on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The novel is told in first person style. The main character Disa, kind of reminds me of the butler from "Remains of The Day" by Kazuo Ishiguro. Both of the characters are very proper and English (except that Disa is really Icelandic). The other similarity is that the stories take place in roughly the same time period. Spanning the beginning of WWII and its after math. I wanted to like Disa's character, but just like the butler (I can't remember his name) in "Remains of The Day" they were both to detached for me to really like or care about."The Journey Home" is also written in vinaigrette style, sort of like "The House on Mango Street" but Olafsson pulls it off much better. The littler vinaigrette's are like diary entries and lets the reader not only into parts of Disa's current and pass life but also her thought process. Once I got use to how dry her personality was the reading became easier. The only problem that I had with the writing is that there is a lot of back and forth between pass and present. There was never a clear indication when Disa was reflecting on her past. So, I had to pay close attention to the details to see what time frame she was talking about.The story really picks up when Disa starts her journey back to Iceland and starts to reflect on her pass experiencing and how they all ended up interconnected to one another. I began to look forward to her when she talked about her time with Jakob (the German-Jew lover) and even though I knew what happens to Jakob, I wanted to know how Disa would deal with the final outcome.I also like how Olafsson put little "clues" to what happened in Disa's past in the story. There are times that you know what the final outcome is going to be, like with Jakob and what happens at the employer's house, but when you get to those moments its nice to finally get a little detail to the whole event.Olafsson has this great way of ending each little chapter with great sentences. that really got to me. I ended up looking forward to them. They were great little closing to each chapter. For example. Lonely notes drifting through the emptiness, futile - completely futile. I took a long time descending the stairs. I reach for my photo of him. The lines are so simple but say so much. All the writing in the book is like that, simple yet elegant.I was only going to give this novel about 3 stars (or 3.5) What pushed this book over the top for me was the last about 50 pages or so. I couldn't put it down. And I almost cried and anything that makes me cry (and not because the book is just that bad) deserves a nice rating.Pros: Writing, Plot, StyleCons: Slow at First, Detached Main CharacterOverall Recommendation:I am going to recommend this book. I think that people who enjoyed "Remains of the Day" will really like this one. But expect it to be sort of slow in the beginning and stick to it. You will be rewarded.
akeela on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Middle-aged Asdis "Disa" Jonsdottir has been living in England for many years but on learning that she is terminally ill, decides to go on a journey to Iceland, the land of her birth. The story is the narrative of her life and her loves, as she quietly reflects on her past, sharing her greatest disappointments, and joys. This was a good, atmospheric read.
punxsygal on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Disa is taking her final trip back home to Iceland. She knows it is her final trip as she has been diagnosed with a terminal illness. Disa has spent many years residing in England managing a country-home hotel. As she had chosen to go by boat, she is left a lot of time to reflect on her childhood and previous journeys home. And in those reflections the reader learns the story of her life, her love, disappointments, and hopes for resolution.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago