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Biblioasis Winter 2022

Eyes of the Rigel
By (author): Roy Jacobsen Translated by: Don Bartlett Translated by: Don Shaw
Roy Jacobsen ,

Translated by :

Don Bartlett ,

Translated by :

Don Shaw


Biblioasis - Windsor



Product Form:


Form detail:

Paperback , Trade


General Trade
Apr 05, 2022
$22.95 CAD


7.6in x 5.3 x 0.5 in | 320 gr

Page Count:

272 pages
FICTION / Literary
Fiction: general and literary|Second World War fiction|Generational sagas|Historical fiction|c 1938 to c 1946 (World War Two period)

The highly anticipated third novel in a historical series that began with International Booker-shortlisted The Unseen

The war is over, and Ingrid Barrøy leaves the island that shares her name to search for the father of her daughter. Alexander, the Russian POW who survived the sinking of the Rigel, has attempted to cross the mountains to Sweden, and now Ingrid follows, carrying their child in her arms, the girl’s dark eyes and a handwritten note her only mementoes of their relationship. Along the way she will encounter partisans and collaborators, refugees and deserters, sinners and servants in a country still bearing the scars of occupation—and before her journey’s end, she’ll be forced to ask herself how well she really knows the man she’s risking everything to find.

Preceded by the International Booker Prize-shortlisted The Unseen and the critically acclaimed White Shadow, Eyes of the Rigel is an unforgettable odyssey and a captivating investigation of memory, guilt, and hope.

Key selling points

  • Third volume in the Barroy trilogy, which began with International Booker-shortlisted The Unseen (April 2020 Indie Next, Powell’s Indiespnsible pick, selected by book clubs at top indies, including Point Reyes), which sold over 2000 copies in the US in its first 90 days, and White Shadow (reviews in NYT, TLS, Daily Mail, Buzzfeed; Kirkus star; 1600 copies in first 90 days).
  • Contemporary issues and debates: Rigel is the post-war, country-in-recovery look at WWII Norway, exploring the civilian cost of war and the natures of loyalty and nationalism, truth and fidelity, shame and blame, selfishness and generosity. editorial comps
  • Genre: a Scandinavian picaresque, replete with comedy, in which the hero is a plucky single mother, the companion her babe in arms. It’s a road trip and a quest, as sharply observed as the first two books, but with a new focus on the social world of the mainland.
  • Can be read as a standalone volume, but to be followed by a fourth Barrøy novel.

Born in Oslo to a family that came from northern Norway, Roy Jacobsen has twice been nominated for the Nordic Council’s Literary Award. He is the author of more than fifteen novels and is a member of the Norwegian Academy for Language and Literature. In 2009 he was shortlisted for the Dublin Impac Award for his novel The Burnt-Out Town of Miracles. Another novel, Child Wonder, won the Norwegian Booksellers' Prize and was a Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers Selection. The Unseen, the first of a series of novels about Ingrid and her family, was a phenomenal bestseller in Norway and was shortlisted for the 2017 Man Booker International Prize and the 2018 International Dublin Literary Award, selected as a 2020 Indie Next pick in North America, and named a New York Times New and Noteworthy book. White Shadow, the second Barrøy novel, was published in North America by Biblioasis in 2021.


  • Print run: 10,000
  • Co-op available
  • Advance reader copies at Winter Institute
  • IndieNext campaign
  • North American TV & radio campaign:
  • Online and social media campaign. Giveaways through Edelweiss, Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, Instagram.
  • Outreach to translation media and booksellers.
  • E-book available same date as print edition, e-book ISBN included on press materials and websites and promoted via social media
  • Excerpts in Lit Hub, Electric Lit
  • Praise for Eyes of the Rigel

    "This delicate account of yearning perfectly caps the strong series."—Publishers Weekly

    "Eyes of the Rigel is a triumph of fearless storytelling and intense examination of the human condition."—Open Book

    Praise for The Barrøy Chronicles

    "Richer, even more provocative ... The heroine of Roy Jacobsen’s White Shadow knows every inch of her home turf, a tiny island off the coast of northern Norway that her people have inhabited for generations. To get a full sense of what it’s like to subsist on Barrøy and how 35-year-old Ingrid comes to be living there alone, it helps to read The Unseen, the first volume in Jacobsen’s trilogy, which has also been translated by Don Bartlett and Don Shaw. But even without that background, the novel’s account of Ingrid’s experience of World War II is unsettlingly easy to follow."New York Times

    "White Shadow retains many of The Unseen’s pleasures, not least Jacobsen’s clean, spare prose ... a noble tribute to the human struggle for decency."—Daniel Marc Janes, Times Literary Supplement

    "Disarmingly plainspoken narration brings into sharp relief both individuals and a world in wartime crisis."Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

    "A powerful read."—David Mills, Sunday Times

    "The turbulent outside world laps at weathered, ancient shores in Jacobsen’s stunning follow-up to The Unseen (one of the great unsung masterpieces of last year) ... In this elegant, sparse novel, every moment is laden with significance as its denizens teeter between brutal memory and resilient hope. This is a book to be savored."Buzzfeed

    "A profound interrogation of freedom and fate, as well as a fascinating portrait of a vanished time, written in prose as clear and washed clean as the world after a storm.”The Guardian

    "The subtle translation, with its invented dialect, conveys a timeless, provincial voice ... The Unseen is a blunt, brilliant book."Financial Times

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