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The Bridal Wreath: Kristin Lavransdatter, Vol.1 and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more
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The Bridal Wreath: Kristin Lavransdatter, Vol.1 Paperback – May 12, 1987

25 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

The Bridal Wreath: Kristin Lavransdatter, Vol.1 + The Mistress of Husaby: Kristin Lavransdatter, Vol. 2 + Kristin Lavransdatter III: The Cross (Penguin Classics)
Price for all three: $33.40

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“Sigrid Undset's trilogy embodies more of life, seen understanding and seriously…than any novel since Dostoievsky's Brothers Karamazov.” —Commonweal“No other novelist has bodied forth the medieval world with such richness and fullness.” —New York Herald Tribune

Language Notes

Text: English, Norwegian (translation)

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; 1st Vintage Books edition (May 12, 1987)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0394752996
  • ISBN-13: 978-0394752990
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #469,112 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 14, 1998
Format: Paperback
My father and sister have been after me for years to read this trilogy and I am so glad I finally did. I have been an avid reader all my life and have read many different types of books, but I have always wondered how I would answer the question "what is your all-time favorite book?" Now I know. You care about all the characters, you feel their emotions and I for one am grateful to be living in the 20th century, not 14th century Norway after the incredibly vivid descriptions bring the period to life in an unforgettable way. So much more than a love story, it is the saga of the age old struggle to survive, emotionally and physically. A wonderful book.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 28, 1997
Format: Paperback
I think the three volumes that make up Kristin Lavransdatter rank with the world's greatest novels--including Tolstoy's Anna Karenina. The depth of the characterizations, the completeness with which the author captures life in medieval Norway, and the universal emotions and spiritual and temporal struggles which drive Kristin and those around her are unmatched. I have read these three volumes three times (at about decade long intervals) and each time have found new reasons to love and appreciate them. This is a book against which one can mark one's own life.
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29 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Dulcinea del Toboso on January 12, 2005
Format: Paperback
This translation is difficult--difficult to read without gagging, that is. It's extremely stilted and affected. Every sentence reads something like this:

"When the child Kristin was seven years old, it so fell out that she got leave to go with her father..."

I don't have a problem with archaic language per se, but the translators of this version have no ear for language of any kind, in my opinion, and so this archaic prose never achieves any kind of naturalness.

Part of the problem may be that the translators never met an archaism they didn't like. In nearly EVERY line of the book Kristin "must needs" do this or would "nowise that" or so-and-so "was always for making merry."

It was so overdone--and so badly done--that I had trouble focusing on the story instead of on the irritating prose.

If you're interested in style and prose quality as well as plot, don't even think about buying this version.... get the Penguin translation instead.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry on November 6, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Kristin Lavransdatter is one of the greatest novels in history, and without a doubt it should be counted alongside the likes of War and Peace, The Brothers Karamazov, and Madame Bovary.

But this is not the translation you should read--needlessly antiquated, bowdlerized, plodding. Get Tina Nunnally's translation, which is wonderful. Yes, it's not available on Kindle. Even if you're like me and prefer reading ebooks over paper, you should still suck it up and buy the paper book. For an English-speaker, Tina Nunnally's translation is thus far the only good way to experience the masterpiece that is Kristin Lavransdatter.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 2, 1998
Format: Paperback
The story of Kristin & Erlend are what all romances are made of, but more than that, this book tells you about family & community life in Medieval Scandanavia, it makes you long to know more about it. The writing in this book is so good and the story so well told you never wonder why it won the Nobel prize. Do not miss any of these books. Kristin & her Erlend are a couple you must know!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 14, 1999
Format: Paperback
Kristin's story is universal and timeless. This incredibly rich saga is relevant to twentieth century society and touches on so many of the life experiences we all go through. I read this book when I was sixteen and never forgot it- my oldest daughter is named Kristin.
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12 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 4, 1999
Format: Paperback
Dittos to the praise bestowed on the monumental work, but for a complete understanding order "Kristin: A Reading" by the great novelist/critic, Andrew Lytle (I bought mine from Amazon)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Midwesternmommy on August 14, 2010
Format: Paperback
Before you read this, you must know that Kristin Lavransdatter is my all time favorite piece of literature, so my opinions may be a bit biased. I first began this trilogy when I was in high school. I made it as far as Kristin's wedding and then I lost interest.I did not understand many of the emotions that Undset's characters were experiencing.Later on, five years later, when I was married and pregnant with my first child, I restarted and could not put the book down. Undset had such deep and clear insights into sin,love, marriage, family, children,spirituality, and the the human heart in general, that I was truly riveted by the story. Her characters are so incredibly real and the historical facts so painstakingly researched, that I still have trouble believing Kristin is a figment of her imagination. The plot line has so many twists and turns that you will not be bored for a moment. The historical facts are very detailed, but I have never found them tedious. Everything I have ever read on Undset describes her as unerring in the historical realm. She gave me a fascination for the middle ages, a time I have always found difficult to imagine since their mindset and customs were so different from today's. I will not give away any of the story since that is the joy of a novel, but I will say it reads like a real life story rather than a fairy tale or romance. There are tears, joy, anger, and disappointment in this woman's life. This trilogy is a must read, especially if you are at all interested in Norwegian or medieval history or in Catholicism which dominates the whole tone of the story. I believe women will enjoy the story more than men because of the drama and emotions,especially in family life - but there are many men who love these books too. I've read the books four times and I'm on my fifth run. I find a different nuance or aspect of the story each time I reread it.
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The Bridal Wreath: Kristin Lavransdatter, Vol.1
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