• Laxness is a poet who writes to the edge of the pages, a visionary who allows us a plot: he takes a Tolstoyan overview, he weaves in an Evelyn Waugh-like humour: it is not possible to be unimpressed

    Daily Telegraph
  • This weird and wonderful novel, about the price you pay for 'the one true note', is Laxness at his best: a reminder of the mad hilarity of the Icelandic sensibility. An endearing and unforgettable voice

    Nicholas Shakespeare
  • It is a novel (a world) that transmits something of the wonder of life, its strangeness, its goodness, ocassions for stubbornness, and the stoicism of people - people everywhere

    Murray Bail
  • Laxness's view of a child's bounded universe has humour and a light touch


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