The story begins in the 1950s with the lives of five families in Sauda, a small town in West Norway. From here the book sweeps the world, travelling back and forth in time and through generations, back to the Finnish Civil War, through the Kanawha Valley in West Virginia, to Bhopal in the Indian State of Madhya Pradesh, through the entire Norwegian post-war era and across Oslo's Ekeberg Fields, back to Sauda and the Grand Manila Café. As things always seem to, the story reaches its finale in a semi-detached house on the outskirts of town.
Rights sold to
Fyr og flamme (Fire and Flames) 1980, U3 1983, Det syvende klima (The Seventh Climate) 1986, Kron og mynt. Eit veddemål (Heads or Tails. A Wager) 1998, Grand Manila 2006, Grense Jakobselv (Crossing the River Jacob) 2009 belong to his most important novels, whereas Sudamericana 2000 represents his excellency in travelogue writing.
The Nordic Literary Prize 1977
The Critics’ Prize 1980
The Brage Prize 1998
Medalla de Honor Presidencial Internacional Centenario Pablo Neruda 2004