The Discomfort of Evening

Adam Mars-Jones writes:

T he​ title of Marieke Lucas Rijneveld’s first novel, a bestseller in their native Holland and the winner of this year’s International Booker Prize, makes it seem like an Italian metaphysical painting, perhaps a de Chirico piazza or colonnade enigmatically bathed in Mediterranean light, when in fact the book is set on a Dutch dairy farm like the one on which its author was raised. The light is hardly Vermeer’s either, and the shadows are deep. The story, starting just before Christmas 2000, is told by Jas Mulder, a year older than Rijneveld, who was born in 1991, but has a similar background.

(LRB 24 Sep 2020)