Jonas Hassen Khemiri is known and acclaimed as a writer since his debut novel by One Eye Red in 2003, and then also as a playwright. But in Sweden with a short memory and hard climate of debate is probably still clicks monster “Best Beatrice Ask,” an open letter to then Minister of Justice of racism in Sweden, published in the Daily News 13 March 2013, which made most shutter. “I want us to change skins and experiences. Come on. We just do it, “writes Khemiri.
On the whole Khemiri a grant, a tone, that makes him, without really ever raise your voice or take any big gestures, gets its reader (or audience for that matter) to obey.
So even with the new novel All I remember , his first in ten years. A novel about love, about friendship, about money and about our unreliable memory.
When it takes begins disaster has already occurred and a young man has died: Samuel. By interviewing people around him trying author reconstruct what really happened, a project that also proves to be a personal grief.
The novel consists of assembled parts of stories and flashbacks taken from different individuals in Samuels proximity. Cut, cut, cut. Khemiri streamers skilful forward. All have their versions of Samuel, their parts of the story – but also their blind spots.
While One Eye Red had a jagberättare, and Monte Core two, telling perspective now multiplied. It creates a kind of collective, fragmented fiction, an ongoing negotiation, without any traditional, omniscient narrator. Nor does the author really knows what he is looking for. Therefore, it is symptomatic that what is lacking in the text is precisely the questions he had put to his interview victims but which color their answers.
And so it is also symptomatic that as the critics notice that I draw a little bit of to account for the action. Which version should I go on, as well? Furthermore, I feel easily manipulated by the recurring theme of memory.
But okay: Samuel, who works at the Swedish Migration Board, hits Vandad, which is småkriminell, at a party. They become close friends, perhaps even love. And then hit Samuel Laide, who works as interpreter. Pang! Love according to the rules. Here are malfunctioning However Author bit of fear of falling into klyschträsket and Laide may say to him, cracking down: “We were actually there in the sunset at Söderbysjön. / — / For the first time in life, we felt a little bit, just a little less alone. If you then want to write something else happened to get well to do it. I’m just telling the truth. “
is a parallel story of Samuel and his grandmother and the portrayal of the demented woman is extraordinary tenderness and fine.
Both between Vandad and Samuel, and Samuel and Laide insinuates itself, however, this money enters the picture: who should make the next round at the pub, who buys food, who let themselves be happy to be invited, and so on. And Samuel will actually pay the full rent when Vandad become unemployed? That kind of stuff. This shows Khemiri how the relationship to money even in principle at the micro level can have black holes can open up between people, and how the presence or absence of money shapes people’s behavior and relationships.
All I remember is not a novel populated by heroes – rather the opposite. And around these people grow the image of a contemporary Sweden that is rarely portrayed in the novel form. It is a country characterized by racism and injustice, where undocumented men take over moving jobs from Vandad, undocumented women living under the double threat, where people tvångsutvisas to the countries they fled – and taxis glide past black skulls in the night.
It is quite prosperous, fairly well-functioning country, which right now seems to be at a crossroads.
To the extent , a novel can actually induce their readers to empathize other people’s lives and destinies, I think that All I remember is a consequence of “Best Beatrice Ask.” An attempt to create and transfer knowledge, a kind of physical experience. It is to be hoped.
Meanwhile, it is a novel with a tremendous timing and a hell of a float in the dialogue. Not least conveyed the sense of how fun is talking. It is in the spoken language gunpowder is.
“Writing is the hardest thing I know,” Jonas Hassen Khemiri said in an interview.
I’m sorry, but it is not noticeable .