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“A perfectly constructed book about truth and deceit, and deceiving through truth, it’s obvious why this book won the Best Translated Book Award in 2011. And it’s the perfect accompaniment to reading all of Jansson’s Moomin books.” —Publishers Weekly
" Her description is unhurried, accurate and vivid, an artist's vision... The sentences are beautiful in structure, movement and cadence. They have inevitable rightness. And this is a translation! Thomas Teal deserves to have his name on the title page with Jansson's: he has worked the true translator's miracle....the most beautiful and satisfying novel I have read this year. " —Ursula K. Le Guin, The Guardian
"...a dark companion to her glowing The Summer Book. Here the setting is winter, and the almost Highsmithian subject concerns a woman who inveigles herself in the life of a famous, and rich, writer. Jansson's writing is, as always, understated yet acute and thrilling." — Los Angeles Times
"...Jansson crafts an unsentimental – often mischievous – novel of ideas that asks whether it is better to be kind than to be truthful, especially for an artist. Ali Smith’s excellent introduction expresses shock and delight that there is still fiction by Jansson untranslated into English. After reading this gem, who could disagree?" —Financial Times
"I loved this book...understated yet exciting, and with a tension that keeps you reading. I felt transported to that remote region of Sweden and when I finished it I read it all over again. The characters still haunt me." — Ruth Rendell
"Tove Janssen is a great, engaging talent -- a serious, complex, occasionally macabre novelist as well as a major and versatile painter who has worked for fifty years in the artistic mainstream. In Scandinavia, she is regarded as a treasure. As we come better to understand her achievement, we honor her likewise" — The HornBook
"...as this narrative ticks forward, it becomes evident that a book of almost inscrutable intricacy is being built from so many simple, separate components gradually enmeshing. "
--Theodore McDermott, The Believer
Most of the story is in what you are compelled to surmise about the characters' motivations based on what they do.
Being able to read Jansson's work in English is like "discovering buried treasure", according to the introduction to the novel by Ali Smith.
The old artist should be Tove Jansson's image!Although some people hurt her feeling,she choose to trust in everyone simply as a child.
Not a perfect novel, but l enjoyed my journey into this snowy world of small town intrigues. Ambiguity reigns. Read morePublished 3 months ago by jennifer stone
This is a deceptively simple book. Over the course of a winter Katri Kling hatches a plot to move in with and against the local writer Anna Aemelin. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Tony Covatta
I absolutely loved this book! The action takes place in snow and ice covered small town. The cold landscape provides not only a background to the story but also has symbolic... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Pen Name
I felt all of the cold and isolation of Norway while reading this story. It takes place in a small town. Read morePublished 12 months ago by S. Reich
What is unsaid in the Jansson books is just as powerful as what is said. Most of the story is in what you are compelled to surmise about the characters' motivations based on what... Read morePublished 15 months ago by Cindy
Tove Jansson's prose is mysterious and sparing. Also loved The Summer Book. Definitely watch the BBC biography: http://www.youtube.com/watch? Read morePublished 18 months ago by Norah Snorrah
Interesting style of writing but it gives an interesting study of the three main characters. Really conveys the isolation and
cold of the area.
This novella is my first introduction to Tove Jansson's adult fiction, and I enjoyed reading it. On a cold January night with the dark pressing in and the wind howling around my... Read morePublished 22 months ago by Andrea Broomfield