Books Magazine

Book Review: a Winter Book by Tove Jansson

By Pamelascott


A Winter Book by Tove Jansson
Sort Of Books (ebook), 1998
208 Pages

Author Website

Amazon (UK)

I borrowed this ebook from my library and read it on my Kobo.

Following the widely acclaimed and bestselling The Summer Book, here is A Winter Book collection of some of Tove Jansson’s best loved and most famous stories. Drawn from youth and older age, and spanning most of the twentieth century, this newly translated selection provides a thrilling showcase of the great Finnish writer’s prose, scattered with insights and home truths. It has been selected and is introduced by Ali Smith, and there are afterword’s by Philip Pullman, Esther Freud and Frank Cottrell Boyce.

A Winter Book features thirteen stories from Tove Jansson’s first book for adults, The Sculptor’s Daughter (1968) along with seven of her most cherished later stories (from 1971 to 1996), translated into English and published here for the first time.

IT WAS LYING BETWEEN THE COAL DUMP AND THE GOODS wagons and under some bits of wood and it was a miracle that no one had found it before me (THE STONE)

I read this for the ‘a book that was originally written in a different language’ category of my Popsugar Reading Challenge 2015.

A Winter Book is a lovely collection of stories. I’d never heard of the author before and was surprised to discover she created the Moomins. I loved them when I was very small and they scared me as well but I can’t remember why. The stories in this collection are gentle, soft, delicate and very beautiful. The stories are different than the sort of stuff I usually read. I tend to favour fiction that is quite dark. A Winter Book is a refreshing change rather like opening heavy curtains that have been long closed into a dark, stifling room and letting daylight sweep in. The collection is split into three sections. I enjoyed the stories in Snow and Flotsam and Jetsam the most. The Dark, Snow, The Iceberg and High Water were my favourites. The third section, Travelling Light was unusual. Most of the stories were made up of letters and snippets of letters to Tove from various fans and correspondents. This section was very touching. I also liked the fact the collection contained some photographs from the author’s life.



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