A winter book : selected stories / Tove Jansson ; translated from the Swedish by Silvester Mazzarella, David McDuff and Kingsley Hart ; introduced by Ali Smith.
Publication year: 2006
Publisher: London : Sort Of,
ISBN: 9780954899523 (pbk.) : 0954899520 (pbk.) :
Drawn from youth and older age, and spanning most of the 20th century, this translated selection provides a showcase of Tove Jansson's prose, scattered with insights and home truths.
208 p. : ill. ; 20 cm.
Reading Group Review. 'A Winter Book' was a new venture for some of us as we have not read short stories. Some of us found the brevity unsettling and unsatisfying. Some loved them. The initial stories are narrated from a child's point of view. Written with the simplicity and sparseness of a child's though, Jansson has a way of observing and capturing the thoughts and language and jumps in ideas that children make, and the way they echo adult sayings. The second group of stories are about the sea, and here Jansson is in her element with descriptions of creeping out of the house at night to see an iceberg, or taking her boat to visit every island in the archipelago. The later stories are more haunting as she faces old age. These were longer and more satisfying to read. The stories gave you a hint of Jansson as a person and a Scandinavian, almost autobiographical in form.
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