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By Sigrid Undset
Four Stories is an honest, uncontrived portrayal of everyday life in early twentieth-century Norway.
- In Selma Brøter, as a spinster becomes involved in the love affair of her two coworkers, Undset draws a powerful, heartrending contrast between her delusion and their bliss.
- In Simonsen, an aged clerk gains support from his son and daughter-in-law, but learns it could come at a steep price.
- In Miss Smith-Tellefesen, a housekeeper finds happiness (and love), until a sudden change results in the loss of everything she has found.
- In Thodolf, a childless sailor’s wife adopts a baby boy. The sudden appearance of the boy’s birth mother sets off a series of events with an affecting conclusion.
Sigrid Undset (1882–1949) was a Norwegian novelist and essayist and a convert to Catholicism. Her work is renowned for its realism and poignancy, and she is best known for her three-volume novel Kristin Lavransdatter. In 1928, Undset was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.