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My Newest Book: Dear Knausgaard

A mix of memoir, literary criticism, and feminist analysis, my most recent book, Dear Knausgaard, is written as a series of letters to the Norwegian author Karl Ove Knausgaard about my experience reading his six-volume, thirty-six-hundred-page autobiographical novel My Struggle.

Praise for Dear Knausgaard

"On display is a rigorous mind, a fiery intellect, a curious and engaged reader. Adrian brings lofty ideas — questions of attention and meaning, of the troubling permeability between inside and outside, of reality itself — down to the meat-and-feeling human level."
—Boston Globe

"Adrian's dynamic work of both literary and self-analysis will appeal to those passionate readers who have vacillated between adoring certain authors and wanting to throw their books across the room."
—Publisher's Weekly

"Adrian [takes] on a daunting task: responding to the entirety of Karl Ove Knausgaard’s My Struggle. If you’re seeking a heady, thoughtful response to a heady, thoughtful multi-volume work — well, we have a recommendation for you."
—Vol. 1 Brooklyn

"In these imaginary letters, Kim Adrian faces down her hero and unwitting oppressor, a man whose novels have helped her see the world anew, but whose blind spots give pain and spark anger. Adrian’s crushing honesty, her unusual forbearance: these make the book a moving and intimate one. Her long attachment to My Struggle makes the critique an essential read."
—William Pierce, author of Reality Hunger: on Karl Ove Knausgaard's My Struggle

"If she’s borrowing a form, Adrian returns it, so far as I can tell, utterly unrecognizable, either dissolved or reinvented in that fancy Benjaminian sense . . . In a series of unsent letters that the writer knew from the start she’d never send, more of a procedural than anything else, Adrian somehow manages to make this plodding come alive . . . I don’t know how she does it."
—Essay Daily

“Kim Adrian’s Dear Knausgaard isn’t just for everyone who reveled in or fought with My Struggle, it’s for everyone who reads — period, everyone who struggles with the profoundly complicated act of engaging with another mind. It is both a love letter to Knausgaard and a feminist critique of his work, a celebration and deconstruction of the act of close reading, and a meta-commentary on the relationship between writer and reader. Smart, funny, intimate, and erudite, this marvelous book is a powerful argument for the potential of reading to change us, to alter the trajectory of our lives.”
—Peter Grandbois, author of Nahoonkara