I recently read This Should be Written in the Present Tense by Danish author Helle Helle. It is one of ten books I won in Penguin Random House UK‘s Let’s Read in English Challenge 2014 over at LovelyBooks.
Dorte has just moved into a bungalow next to a train station. She is supposed to attend classes at university in Copenhagen, but decides to do other things instead.
This Should be Written in the Present Tense is a book where very little happens. The novel describes Dorte’s present and past life and her life, especially the past, is as normal as it can get for a young woman. For some this might not be enough, but I find Dorte’s reality intriguing. The novel has a depressing undertone and there is nothing overly dramatic about the plot, yet knowing that there is room for improvement in Dorte’s life is exactly what makes the book so fascinating.
This Should be Written in the Present Tense is a minimalistic novel that is just the right length. It might not be for everyone, but if you are a university student with the occasional motivation problem, you should be able to relate to Dorte’s story and give this brilliant novel a try.