In the sixteenth century, Antinous Bellori, a boy of eleven, is lost in a dark forest and stumbles upon two glowing beings, one carrying a spear, the other a flaming torch . . . This event is decisive in Bellori’s life, and he thereafter devotes himself to the pursuit and study of angels, the intermediaries of the divine. Beginning in the Garden of Eden and soaring through to the present, A Time for Everything reimagines pivotal encounters between humans and angels: the glow of the cherubim watching over Eden; the profound love between Cain and Abel despite their differences; Lot’s shame in Sodom; Noah’s isolation before the flood; Ezekiel tied to his bed, prophesying ferociously; the death of Christ; and the emergence of sensual, mischievous cherubs in the seventeenth century. Incorporating and challenging tradition, legend, and the Apocrypha, these penetrating glimpses hazard chilling questions: can the nature of the divine undergo change, and can the immortal perish?
Knausgaard joins the ranks of the greatest storytellers of our time. His glittering prose is purposeful, precise, and poetic. . . . There can be no doubt about his extraordinary talent: only the work of a master can be thought provoking on so many levels yet retain a lightness of touch.
— Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung
...With each subsequent book of his that is translated into English, Mr. Knausgaard continues to solidify his reputation as one of the most vital writers working today.
— The Observer (UK)
The writing glows with an intense awareness of the here and now, and loving observations of landscapes and objects . . . this is an extraordinary novel, and completely original.
— The Independent
It may well become a cult novel.
— The Guardian
A marvelous book. . . . Knausgaard's most evident strength as a writer is his gift for minute description, especially of nature, but also of the human psyche. . . . The descriptions of forests, floods, streams, fields, and Henrik Vankel's secluded island are ravishing and . . . create the feeling that we are being transported, again and again, into some primordial world.
— Ingrid D. Rowland, The New York Review of Books
…this strange and serious novel of ideas is an admirably imaginative contemporary reinterpretation of characters whose odd, splendid appearances in Christian mythology are made all the more mysterious for being matter-of-fact and never fully explained.
— Metro UK
A Time for Everything investigates the sources of the modern longing for belief without faith, the hunger for certainty, and the triumph of wishful thinking. And what it offers are the rigors of imagination as an equally intangible, but more substantial consolation than mere wishfulness.
— The Hudson Review
This is a literal-minded novel about a visionary subject—a grand mismatch of terms, a happily mixed metaphor, and an audacious effort for that.
Charting the relationship between humanity and the divine, in light of the angelic manifestations in the Bible, Knausgaard adds a new coat of palpability to a selection of Biblical stories by injecting them with emotional resonances that are latent or missing from the source material.
— Galley Cat
Knausgaard’s work is vibrantly alive. It is filled with wild energy and the most passionate creative purpose
— Open Letters Monthly