Professor Andersen's Night, By Dag Solstad


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The Independent Culture

It's Christmas Eve and 55-year-old Professor Pal Andersen is dining in alone on pork ribs and whipped cranberries.

Happening to glance out of the window of his tidy Oslo apartment, he sees a man in the act of strangling a young woman. He can't bring himself to call the police, and doesn't even discuss the incident with his old friend Bengt Halvorsen over dinner the next day.

Not a reworking of Rear Window, but a wry moral tale exploring the little evasions and compromises of everyday life. Translator Agnes Scott Langeland does justice to Solstad's measured voice.