An extraordinary genre-defying writer
Grue’s work deals with embodiment - with what it means to be a body in an endlessly complex world. Combining literary exploration and elements of science fiction and speculative fiction, his stories trouble the issues of what makes a meaningful life and how we value different kinds of lives.
Jan Grue is the author of a wide-ranging body of work in fiction, non- fiction, and children’s literature. He made his debut with the short story collection Everything Under Control (2010), which was received with glowing reviews: “Grue is bright, he’s funny, academic and poetic, restless and patient, creative, analytical and sensitive. He has a broad repertoire and moves elegantly between different writing styles,” wrote the reviewer in Adresseavisen.
He has since published a further four short story collections, the latest of which is Vexations (2019). His first novel, The Best of All Possible Worlds, came out in 2016. Among Grue’s works for children is Oliver (2012), a fantastical story about living wheelchairs. His academic books include Body Language, on the subject of the representations of disability in a cultural and socio-analytical perspective, and Theory in Practice, a primer on critical analysis.
His book of autobiographical non-fiction, I Live a Life Like Yours, was published in 2018. “The book will, in all likelihood, linger as a mile stone signifying that a new maturity is reaching autobiographical literature in Norwegian non-fiction,” wrote Morgenbladet’s Ane Farsethås. Dagbladet’s reviewer called the book ”a literary masterpiece that I recommend in the strongest terms!”, giving the book five stars. The book went on to win the Literary Critics’ Award and has been nominated to the Nordic Council’s Literature Prize – as the first Norwegian non-fiction book in 50 years.
Jan Grue was born in 1981 in Oslo. He holds a PhD in Linguistics and is Professor of Qualitative Research at the University of Oslo.
I Live a Life like Yours (2018)
USA, Farrar, Straus & Giroux
UK, Pushkin Press
Netherlands, Uitgeverij Oevers
Iceland, Iceland University Press
Korea, Book 21
Body and Mind (2012):
Foto: Mathias Fossum