Long Live the Post Horn!
Part of the Verso Fiction series
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Paperback with free ebook
$19.95$13.9630% off
208 pages / September 2020 / 9781788733137
September 2020 / 9781788733151

"Winner of the Believer Book Award for Fiction"

A tartly hilarious and deeply affecting new novel from the best-selling author of Will and Testament

Ellinor, a thirty-five-year-old media consultant, has not been feeling herself; she’s not been feeling much at all lately. Far beyond jaded, she picks through an old diary and fails to recognise the woman in its pages, seemingly as far away from the world around her as she’s ever been. But when her coworker vanishes overnight, an unusual new task is dropped on her desk. Off she goes to meet the Norwegian Postal Workers Union, setting the ball rolling on a strange and transformative six months.

This is an existential scream of a novel about loneliness (and the postal service!), written in Hjorth’s trademark spare, rhythmic and cutting style.


Long Live the Post Horn! is a brilliant study of the mundane, full of unexpected detours and driving prose … Hjorth’s novel ingeniously orbits the intimate stories that are possible only when a character has put words on paper and sent them through the post.”

Long Live the Post Horn! is an ordinary person’s epic tale of how it feels to emerge from the thralldom of apathy: how one feeble movement unleashes the torrential energy of life renewed.”

“Hjorth asks us to imagine a world where those with narrative power protect the stories of the people over the interests of commerce … The timing was right for this book in Norway in 2012, and the timing is right for us now. A novel like Long Live the Post Horn! does not come around often enough.”

“Gripping, inspiring, and politically revolutionary.”

“An acidic portrait of one woman’s fight to save the postal service.”

“Luminous … Lucidly translated by Charlotte Barslund, this slight novel—a chapterless stream of consciousness interrupted by dialogue—can be read in a single sitting.”

“The ordinary becomes vibrant and life-affirming in Long Live the Post Horn!, an engrossing novel about how even hopeless battles are worth fighting.”

“Hjorth’s substantive and witty novel of personal growth delivers on multiple levels.”

“Quirky, unsettling.”

“An emotional, philosophical read … this book is wonderful, and I would urge you to seek it out.”

“A superb story about a woman on the verge of a nervous breakdown.”

“Wrenching tenderness from the mouth of irony, Hjorth proves how major effects don’t always come from the heavy-foot pedals.”

“A tour de force. Therborn explores the complex relationship between capitalism and democracy with great originality and insight.”

“How much inequality can democracy withstand before it collapses? Göran Therborn addresses this fundamental question and gives us cause to hope for a more egalitarian future.”

“An engaging, well-honed novel … Hjorth’s writing is both spare and, in an understated way, humorous.”

“A wry and thoughtful take on contemporary life and love … Full of gorgeous Scandi gloom and bleak truths about human relationships.”

“[In] Long Live the Post Horn!, the saga of the EU postal directive is an inspired context for a story about personal despair and political awakening.”

“Hjorth holds a magnifying glass to her characters and they fry like ants under the merciless sunlight of her writing. No one of them escapes unscathed, there are no heroes or villains; what we get is a picture of life in a social democracy that is fraying at the edges.”

“Hjorth expertly interrogates feelings of inadequacy in concise paragraphs of wry prose.”

“Droll and rather delightful.”

“A novel about the chicanery of governmental politics has no right to be this absorbing.”

“A big strange wonderful paper hug of a book … I cannot recommend it highly enough.”

“Funny, wry, insightful, and finally sincere.”

“The brilliance of Vigdis Hjorth is her ability to match a distinctive lack of sentimentality with a seductive and questing idealism.”

“Hjorth’s novel is a jolting tour de force impossible to put down, gleaming with philosophical insight and tenderness in the most unexpected places.”

“This beautiful novel, in its spare and often very funny way, presents loneliness and inadequacy, vibrancy and connection with such clarity and power. In truth, I had no idea just how much a book dealing with Norwegian union responses to an EU free-competition postal directive would mean to me.”

“Slim but fulfilling … Hjorth’s brisk, spare prose invigorates Long Live the Post Horn!, making it a captivating read.”

“Made me want to storm the barricades of Royal Mail.”

“A strange and funny and psychologically incisive novel about how community can revitalise, how grassroots activism and empathy are the salves in a world made lonely and malignant by individualism”

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