Agnete is in control. Her days have a set rhythm, her body obeys commands, she has a job that she enjoys. She is married for the second time and has a daughter that is on the brink of adulthood. Then one day, her hair starts to fall off. On an early autumn morning her husband goes on a long work trip abroad that will keep him away until Christmas. She is alone in their Oslo flat with her daughter. Agnete has the time and space to try to find the words for what her body has been trying to tell her for a while.
In flashes and fragments, she looks back at herself as a young student in London. At how she longed to be seen and loved for who she truly was. At how for all those years she got lost in a darkness disguised as light.
DIAMOND NIGHTS is a story about a life, seen through the prism of a toxic relationship that started when the narrator was young and lasted for many years. It is a novel that probes into the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves – stories that enable us to live our lives, and stories that lead us astray.
Nora Campbell, Aschehoug’s Publisher, says:
‘The story is one you may think you’ve heard before: a woman looks back on a sexual relationship she had at an earlier age with a much older man. What sets this novel apart is the clarity of the prose, the stunning observations of how we manoeuvre in relationships and the author’s unyielding quest to unravel the weave of stories the narrator constructs to make sense of herself and justify her choices. DIAMOND NIGHTS forces the reader to reflect on what victimhood really is, on how we construct our truth. The secret destructive tendencies of the protagonist, her ruthless reevaluation of what she thought was her life, show us the world anew. Hilde Rød-Larsen writes with the authority, insight and precision of a refined author. Her double portrait of Marianne and Agnete brings to mind authors like Rachel Cusk and Elizabeth Strout. I am incredibly proud to publish DIAMOND NIGHTS, it is a timeless novel entirely of this moment’.