Reykjavík City Lake – Svava Jakobsdóttir

Here, by the Reykjavik City Lake, you can enjoy listening to a reading from the short story "Return" by Svava Jakobsdóttir (1930-2004). The story narrates the return of a middle-aged woman to Iceland, after having moved to the US with her Icelandic mother and American stepfather, who was a soldier in occupied Iceland during World War II. The school in the scene read from here is on the other side of the street from this bench, Miðbæjarskólinn (The City Centre School).

Svava is one of Iceland's leading authors and her short stories, often depicting the lives of women, hold a special place in Icelandic literature. Her first work of fiction was the short story collection Tólf konur (Twelve Women), published in 1965. Many of her best known stories appear in English translations in the book The Lodger and Other Stories, first published in 2000.

Read by María Thórdardóttir
Translated by Julian Meldon D'Arcy. From the book The Lodger and Other Stories. Reykjavík, JPV, 2006
Recorded by Jórunn Sigurðardóttir, the Icelandic National Broadcasting