Reviews · True Stories

The Danish Girl – David Ebershoff

Hello Everyone !

A few months ago, I saw there was going to be another movie with Eddie Redmayne, who is an actor I really like. I watched the trailer and it made me want to watch the movie and being a reader it was inconceivable for me to watch the movie before reading the book, well I actually listened to the audiobook but you know what I mean. If you watch a lot of videos on YouTube you probably came across the trailer at some point.

41pqddsz6xl-_sx309_bo1204203200_It is the story of the first man who became a woman through surgery in the 1920s. We follow the two/three main characters who are Einar Wegener and his woman self that he will become, Lili Elbe, and Einar’s wife Gerta Wegener. Einar and Gerta are two painters living in Copenhagen in the 1920s. One day Gerta has to finish the painting of a woman who isn’t here when Gerta is doing the finishing touches so she asks her husband to sit for her wearing the dress. She calls him Lili affectionately. From this day on they begin to live the three of them together, Lili coming more and more often. The book is really about how Einar and Gerta are dealing with the arrival of Lili and how Einar realizes that he is in fact a woman in a man’s body.

I gave this a 4.5/5 stars. The story in itself I cannot grade since it is a true story but the way it was told is really impressive. The way the perspective was used just blew me away, Lili got her own point of view and she sometimes even had different perspective on things than Einar did which was very interesting to see because it really sets your mind to the fact that Lili and Einar are two different people. Which is really not how I felt when I went into the book. I thought it would just be a man wanting to be a woman but that man and that woman would still be the same person. But in this case it is not, Lili thinks of Einar as another person. I realize that the way I try to explain it doesn’t make sense but in the book it just comes like this and it makes sense.

Another aspect of the book that I found so interesting was the other people’s feelings on Lili, especially Einar’s wife’s, Gerta. I thought there would be so many people who wouldn’t accept Lili and who would just think Einar was crazy and there a few people like this but most of Einar’s friends were really understanding which surprises me in a good way. And even if it took Einar and Lili so much courage to do what they had to do it is super important not to underestimate the courage and the strength Gerta must have had to get through it on Lili’s side.

Overall it was a beautiful story about a person finding out who she is and fighting for it and about love and friendship strong enough to look past something that unconventional, especially in those times.

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Einar Wegener and Lili Elbe 

So yes, those are my thoughts on the book, now I can’t wait to go and see the movie while it is still in the theaters. My aunt went to see it and highly recommended it to me. If you have seen the movie or read the book please tell me if you liked it. And if maybe you would like to see a post about my thoughts on how the book translated into a movie, just tell me in the comments. I’d love to do it.

Bye bye

 

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