GFF book review
Three in Norway
Author: J.A. Lees & W.J. Clutterbuck
Reviewed by Martin Joergensen What an enchanting and entertaining book! I cannot recommend it enough. Written in the late 1800's and first published in 1882 this book is bound to be an all time classic - especially in Norway where many school kids have been forced to read it as a part of their English education.
We all know what these meetings with good literature can do to a good book. Unfortunately such encounters have left many pupils with an everlasting disgust for a certain literary work. I have my crosses to bear in that respect, but luckily I was never forced to read "Three in Norway", and I'm very happy for that.
Because this is a real gem!
Three young English gentlemen venture to the wild and somewhat savage Norway during the era where Victorian Englishmen would go there to fish and hunt.
These three: Skipper, Esau and John, travel to Norway, and we follow their preparations, their journey, the way they create themselves a temporary home in the mountains, in a camp that goes beyond all description.
Then we follow these three stout fellows during a season in the mountains. And they certainly lead a life that can make any modern outdoors person envious. Just imagine a life: sleep in a large and roomy tent all night, stove (and baking oven) well placed in the center, breakfast of Victorian dimensions, prepare for the day and then spend the day on the lake, by the stream or in the mountains, fishing for trout, hunting for birds and reindeer.
Their joys and hardships are too good to be true, well told - by two of them as the subtitle suggests. Their encounters with the locals, visitors from home, the meals they eat (three course menus and more), the weather ever changing, the landscape and environment and their search for prey in air, on land and in water.
It's a perfectly entertaining story. You will inevitably find yourself yearning for that era. The plentiness, the life without worries and the whole concept of moving yourself and your whole household onto the banks of your favorite, pristine fishing water for a whole summer.
You might not be able to do it, but you can read about it. And you should.
This edition with the original drawings - with map and fifty-nine drawings on wood from the original sketches by the author, as it says on the title leaf - is global class!
I obtained my book from Paul Morgan's shop Coch-y-Bonddu Books i Wales.
A place to envy: the camp in the Norwegian mountains.
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