8,955 book reviews and counting...

A Moth to a Flame Reviews

A Moth to a Flame by Stig Dagerman, Benjamin Miers-Cruz, Siri Hustvedt

A Moth to a Flame

Stig Dagerman, Benjamin Miers-Cruz, Siri Hustvedt

Score pending

2 reviews

Imprint: Penguin Books Ltd
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Publication date: 5 Sep 2019
ISBN: 9780241400739
3 stars out of 5
23 Oct 2019

"The novel, in a new translation by Benjamin Miers-Cruz, is a timely warning on the dangers of absolutism"

The novel, in a new translation by Benjamin Miers-Cruz, is a timely warning on the dangers of absolutism... Bengt’s view of human nature is bleak... A Moth to a Flame is a book by a young writer, but the flaws that go along with that – a chaos of feelings, excessive detail, cynicism verging on nihilism – work in its favour and fit the fabric of Bengt’s churning emotions. Regrettably, we will never know how Dagerman’s writing would have developed in later life; he abandoned fiction in 1949, at the age of 26, and killed himself five years later.

Reviews

4 stars out of 5
Ian Thomson
12 Sep 2019

"This moody, death-haunted novel is well worth reading."

Written in a lean, cinematic prose, Dagerman’s existential novels of the late Forties consider marital breakdown and sexual betrayal. Greene, for one, praised them for their “beautiful objectivity” and air of morbid psychology... Thanks to Graham Greene’s advocacy, Dagerman was in fact published in the UK in the late Fifties and early Sixties. A poet of the mundane, his influence can be felt today in detective fiction from Scandinavia (Henning Mankell, Jo Nesbo). This moody, death-haunted novel is well worth reading.