Please Read This Leaflet Carefully
Author: Karen Havelin
Written in first person and following a reverse chronology which subverts the typical illness story, Please Read This Leaflet Carefully follows Laura Fjellstad in her struggles to live a normal life. Having been diagnosed with severe endometriosis in her twenties, she believes that the only way to survive her painful and debilitating illness is to be completely self-reliant. In between doctors’ appointments and in and out of hospitals, Laura confronts single parenting after her divorce, leading a life her own teenage self would be in awe of.
To be devoured intensely in one sitting, Please Read This Leaflet Carefully is an exceptional debut novel with bracing emotional insights and piercing descriptions of pain that linger in one’s mind long after the last page. It is also a beguiling meditation on relationships, motherhood, menopause, sexuality, pain and a woman’s life journey to come to terms with her own body.
ENGLISH (NA) | Dottir Press
ENGLISH (UK & Comm.) | Dead Ink
NORWEGIAN | Cappelen Damm
«Most books about disease try to describe the pain; told in poetic whisper, Karen Havelin’s debut novel lets pain speak for itself. It’s a book that dares you be nosy, to eavesdrop and listen in to a stoic young woman whom no one noticed until she began to disappear, her body disintegrating from the inside out until there’s nothing left but searing agony and almost impossibly – a burning triumph.» Paul Beatty, Man Booker Prize Winner 2016
«Karen Havelin writes with astounding sensitivity and grace of the vulnerability of the body, that abject and essential container within which we live our entire lives. With a keen eye for detail and a boundless capacity to evoke empathetic thought, Havelin’s debut is a revelation.» Alexandra Kleeman, author of You Too Can Have a Body Like Mine
«A superbly written and incredibly graceful novel about the things that really matter: love, mortality, and all the beautiful things that keep us alive.» Gary Shteyngart