If one was to begin to ask oneself

Short stories,  Samleren, 2007

In 16 short stories, the boundary between the fantastic and the realistic is explored: Three children live out a dramatic triangle; a hide-bound rationalist sees ghosts; a senile woman writes letters to a secret lover; a young mother rides the local train every night wearing an artificial full beard; a university lecturer gives birth to brightly coloured birds from her mouth; a female dancer achieves artistic perfection and steps out of reality; a torturer enjoys his retirement...

The book was awarded The Danish National Arts Foundation Award for new publications, 2007

Translation: David Young, © Adda Djørup

Quotes from reviews

"Adda Djørup is a completely unique voice in recent Danish literature ... Adda Djørup can write long sentences, she can construct smooth passages and abrupt shifts, but she can also lead the reader by the beard in the twisting maze of her prose ... One can go on revisiting Djørup's short stories and constantly find something new in them. There is a great talent at work here, with and without the beard."
Mai Misfeldt, Berlingske

"This is biting social criticism at a high linguistic level. There where the cracks show in linguistic clichés and professional cynicism. It's actually hard to finish Adda Djørup's book because, as a reader, one gets the urge to begin to ask oneself."
Peter Nielsen, Information

"Adda Djørup tells 16 tall tales full of grace, maturity and linguistic quick-change turns. Her collection of short stories is a divine little heartbreaker which leaves the reader in a fever of yearning: more!"
Lise Garsdal, Politiken

"On the front cover of Adda Djørup's collection of short stories If One Were To Begin To Ask Oneself the author is pictured wearing a large black beard - as a reminder that she is a true juggler who can freely choose the roles she will put into play."
Karina Søby Madsen, readme.dk

"If one were to begin to ask oneself whether literature has died, to the advantage of biographies and minor literary amusement phenomena, one would just have to read Adda Djørup's prose debut."
Stefan Kjerkegaard, Sentura