“The Ruby” – and the court case that followed its publication – makes up an important part of Norwegian post-war history. Agnar Mykle and the publisher of Gyldendal Harald Grieg were accused of publishing immoral and obscene material. On an order from the Oslo city court in 1957, the entire remaining printing of the book was confiscated, though Mykle and Grieg were acquitted. The year after, the confiscation itself was also overturned by the Supreme Court.
The story of the young Ask Burlefot’s road through shame, defeats and triumphs towards a deeper and more honest understanding of himself, opened the eyes of an entire generation. The novel is an intense and vital bildungsroman, rich in youthful hubris and lust for life, but also with harrowing soul searching and self-contempt.