Emily Forever

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Pub Date 04 Jun 2024 | Archive Date 31 May 2024

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Description

In this novel about poverty, social inequality, and class contempt in Norway, nineteen-year-old supermarket worker Emily is single, pregnant, and struggling to make ends meet. 

Em’s nineteen years old and pregnant. Her boyfriend Pablo has gone out “to take care of something” and hasn’t returned. Her mother, who raised Emily alone, moves into the little apartment to help. Meanwhile, Em’s neighbour, who may or may not be a clergyman, wonders if it’s normal to be so infatuated with someone you’ve never spoken to. Em’s boss at the supermarket might have feelings for her too, if only she’d notice. Emily Forever is a poignant, achingly hard-hitting book about class and about digging deep to find what it takes to get by. At the same time, it’s a deeply original exploration of how a girl like Emily is seen from the outside, by those who think they know who she is and how her life is supposed to pan out. Empathetic and quizzical, and scathingly humorous, Emily Forever is a novel of unyielding solidarity and smoldering social dissent, by a new star of Scandinavian literature.

In this novel about poverty, social inequality, and class contempt in Norway, nineteen-year-old supermarket worker Emily is single, pregnant, and struggling to make ends meet. 

Em’s nineteen years old...


Advance Praise

Praise for Emily Forever

“Emily is nineteen years old, works at the supermarket, and is pregnant. Her boyfriend Pablo has gone out ‘to take care of something’ and hasn’t returned. Her mother, who raised Emily alone, moves into the little apartment to help. Emily Forever is a properly defiant novel. It refuses to be categorized. Yes, it deals with class and poverty, but it’s just as much about our gaze on the so-called poor and powerless. Maria Navarro Skaranger has written an intelligent, ironic, vital, and poetic novel, which with its many changes of narrative perspective challenges the reader’s expectations and ideas. With its defiant attitude, Skaranger reminds us that the story of the passive, drowsy, and not very future-oriented Emily is very much one worth telling.” ―Jury, the Critics’ Prize (Norway)

“Skaranger writes with wisdom and heart about the anybodies of society in this brilliant novel. Skaranger is a glowing literary talent, and part of what makes this novel so rich is its inquiring, critical, observing narrative voice.” ―Dagens Næringsliv

“A profoundly beautiful book about a rudderless existence that seems genetically conditioned. Skaranger’s warm prose and deeply felt sympathy for Emily glows throughout the novel.” ―Dagbladet

“In beautiful, intuitive prose, Maria Navarro Skaranger shows how class contempt is expressed in Norway. A fantastic book.” ―Vårt Land

 “In a novel distinguished by intelligence and nuanced prose, Maria Navarro Skaranger follows her confused main character into a new life phase. Her body of work exudes a peculiar, beautiful energy.” ―Klassekampen 

Praise for Emily Forever

“Emily is nineteen years old, works at the supermarket, and is pregnant. Her boyfriend Pablo has gone out ‘to take care of something’ and hasn’t returned. Her mother, who...


Marketing Plan

  • Advance galleys and digital reader copies
  • Digital assets including trailer & author video
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  • Consumer-facing national advertising campaign on Shelf Awareness, Lithub, NPR, Foreword Reviews, Goodreads
  • Virtual or in-person author events
  • Book club discussion guide
  • Bookstore co-op available
  • Excerpt placement
  • Social-media campaign & Goodreads Giveaway
  • Advance galleys and digital reader copies
  • Digital assets including trailer & author video
  • Signed book plates available
  • National TV, radio, print, and online review campaign
  • Consumer-facing...

Available Editions

EDITION Other Format
ISBN 9781642861372
PRICE $19.99 (USD)
PAGES 162

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Average rating from 5 members


Featured Reviews

I went to Norway in September and I really wanted to know more about Scandinavian literature, other than thrillers. Emily Forever was a very interesting read to me in a way that is hard to explain. It's a slow paced book that really builds a narrative around a very ordinary girl in a complicated situation. It's giving Tove Ditlevsen The Copenhagen Trilogy vibes. If you're looking for something with a lot of action, this is not for you. Nor is it something you should pick up if you're in a romance mood, but if you want something different, without picking up a 500 pages brick.. This one should be on your list. There's a lot of doubt and uncertainty in the book, which causes for quite some repetition. It feels like you're peeking through a whole and watching someone's life develop in front of your eyes, while society is just not a very welcoming place. It's kinda grey and sad and feels like watching a slow, very descriptive film. I'd give it 3.5 out of 5 stars, because I think you really need to be in the mood for something like this and it's a tricky one in terms of storyline. I liked it, also felt very sad for Emily, wanted to help her out, be a friend to her. I'd recommend it to certain people, but it's not for everyone and I think no book should aim to be 'for everyone'.

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Emily Forever is set in a deprived area of Oslo but could be any city anywhere where the poor make do and life is full of compromise and too often unwise decisions just to get by. 19 year-old Emily is a supermarket worker with a petty drug dealer for a boyfriend who can't get away quick enough when they discover she's pregnant. The book is uncompromisingly realistic about the life of what's often derogatorily called the Underclass, people almost doomed from the start with limited horizons and knowing that ambitions are pointless.
The book can be a bit confusing as it jumps from character to character and timeline to timeline ,often quite randomly, but it's a very effective and evocative piece of work. All of the main characters in their own way are stuck in a rut,one which Emily's Mother is desperate for her daughter to escape from while deep down realising that it'll never happen and there's almost a documentary feel to the whole thing as author Maria Navarro Skaranger paints a picture of life for the urban poor and the cycles of hopelessness that pass down through the generations.
This is a multi-award winning book in the author's native Norway and it's easy to see why. A short but very effective read.

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I really enjoyed how realistic this story was and that the character was sympathetic and was everything that I was looking for. The story was really well done and I enjoyed how strong it was overall. I enjoyed how good everything flowed with each other and enjoyed the concept. Maria Navarro Skaranger has a great writing style and I can’t wait to read more from them.

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