(CoDex 1962, 2016)
Translated by award winning translator Victoria Cribb and brought out together in a single volume for its first publication in English, CoDex 1962 contains Icelandic writer and poet Sjón’s magnum opus; a trilogy of novels 25 years in the making.
In these three texts, Josef Löwe – narrator, golem and self-confessed fictional construct – recounts his entire life and more, reaching all the way back to his parents’ chance meeting in WWII-era Germany, where together they shaped his body out of clay. Josef’s tale twists and turns and folds itself around all manners of stories – great mythologies as well as minor incidents in history. In fact, the three novels in this hefty volume form a triptych of sorts, composed of different genres – romance, mystery and science fiction.
As before, Sjón’s writing is remarkably open handed, pulling freely into itself all manner of references from annals of folklore, theology, literature and science as well as populist entertainments such as pulps, comics, films and music. Together, these three books stand as a testament to the author’s concept of the novel form as the ultimate mode of storytelling; a Legion-like construct that contains within itself all other forms of writing.