Tove Ditlevsen

The Faces
  • The Faces

  • Copenhagen, 1968. Lise, a children's book writer and married mother of three, is becoming increasingly haunted by disembodied faces and taunting voices. Convinced that her housekeeper and husband are plotting against her, she descends into a terrifying world of sickness, pills and institutionalization. But is sanity in fact a kind of sickness? And might mental illness itself lead to enlightenment?

    Brief, intense and haunting, Ditlevsen's novel recreates the experience of madness from the inside, with all the vividness of lived experience.

Tove Ditlevsen was born in 1917 in a working-class neighbourhood in Copenhagen. Her first volume of poetry was published when she was in her early twenties, and was followed by many more books, including her three brilliant volumes of memoir, Childhood (1967), Youth (1967) and Dependency (1971). She married four times and struggled with alcohol and drug abuse throughout her adult life until her death by suicide in 1978.