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About Tove Jansson
Photo by Hans Gedda [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
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Tove Jansson, whose Moomintroll comic strip and books brought her international acclaim, lived for much of her life on an island like the one described in The Summer Book, and the work can be enjoyed as her closely observed journal of the sounds, sights, and feel of a summer spent in intimate contact with the natural world.
It is spring in the valley and the Moomins are ready for adventure! Moomintroll and his friends Snufkin and Sniff find the Hobgoblin's top hat, all shiny and new and just waiting to be taken home. They soon realize that his is no ordinary hat; it can turn anything—or anyone—into something else!
When Moomintroll learns that a comet will be passing by, he and his friend Sniff travel to the Observatory on the Lonely Mountains to consult the Professors. Along the way, they have many adventures, but the greatest adventure of all awaits them when they learn that the comet is headed straight for their beloved Moominvalley.
Everyone knows the Moomins sleep through the winter. But this year, Moomintroll has woken up early. So while the rest of the family slumber, he decides to visit his favorite summer haunts. But all he finds is this strange white stuff. Even the sun is gone! Moomintroll is angry: whoever Winter is, she has some nerve. Determined to discover the truth about this most mysterious of all seasons, Moomintroll goes where no Moomin has gone before.
Mari is a writer and Jonna is an artist, and they live at opposite ends of a big apartment building, their studios connected by a long attic passageway. They have argued, worked, and laughed together for decades. Yet they’ve never really stopped taking each other by surprise. Fair Play shows us Mari and Jona’s intertwined lives as they watch Fassbinder films and Westerns, critique each other’s work, spend time on a solitary island (recognizable to readers of Jansson’s The Summer Book), travel through the American Southwest, and turn life into nothing less than art.
A huge wave has crashed through the valley, flooding the Moomins out of their home! With their usual resilience, the Moomins and their friends move into the first house that comes bobbing along. It's strange-looking, like a big cave with curtains hanging on either side. And when the house bumps into dry land and Moomintroll and the Snork Maiden decide to spend the night on shore--then the adventure really begins. Moomintroll and the Snork Maiden get lost, and Moominpappa decides to write a play which they will perform in the house, in the hope that Moomintroll will hear about it and find his way home.
"Moominsummer Madness," the fourth in Tove Jansson's classic series of books about Moominvalley, is enchanting and full of exciting adventures and surprises, some of them odd even by Moomin standards!
Tove Jansson's Moomin characters and books are admired the world over. In the United States the series beginning with Finn Family Moomintroll (first published in English in 1945) has accumulated generations of fans. Since Farrar, Straus and Giroux began reissuing the books in 1989, grateful readers old and new have been thrilled to have the stories available again. At last the final installment is being published – oddly, the only book that features none of the Moomin family themselves, though it does take place at their house. There familiar characters converge – Snufkin, the Hemulen, Fillyjonk, and others – seeking out the Moomins' welcoming company, only to find them absent. All remain at the house, all have very different personalities that clash often, but something about their homey cohabitation during the icy winter changes each visitor in a gratifying way. As The Times Literary Supplement put it, Moominvalley in November is "possibly the cleverest of the Moomin books."
Before he had a family, Moominpappa led a life of adventure and intrigue. But he's never told his story until now. He has a bad cold, and it's the perfect time to remember his youthful endeavors and to ponder the experiences which have made him the remarkable Moomin he is.
Leave Moominvalley? Is it possible? Yes, even the Moomin family need a change of scenery sometimes, so they're off to live in a lighthouse on a tiny island. Here they find space to grow, and to do things they couldn't in their comfortable, cluttered valley home. As they discover their new home, the family also discover surprising, and wonderfully funny, new things about themselves.
Snow has been falling on the village all winter long. It covers windows and piles up in front of doors. The sun rises late and sets early, and even during the day there is little to do but trade tales. This year everybody’s talking about Katri Kling and Anna Aemelin. Katri is a yellow-eyed outcast who lives with her simpleminded brother and a dog she refuses to name. She has no use for the white lies that smooth social intercourse, and she can see straight to the core of any problem. Anna, an elderly children’s book illustrator, appears to be Katri’s opposite: a respected member of the village, if an aloof one. Anna lives in a large empty house, venturing out in the spring to paint exquisitely detailed forest scenes. But Anna has something Katri wants, and to get it Katri will take control of Anna’s life and livelihood. By the time spring arrives, the two women are caught in a conflict of ideals that threatens to strip them of their most cherished illusions.
Here are nine delightfully funny stories about the triumphs and tribulations of the citizens of Moominvalley. Readers will discover how the Moomin family save young Ninny from permanent invisibility, and what happens when Moomintroll catches the last dragon in the world. Some of the characters in these tales will be brand-new to Moomin fans, but there are lots of old friends to meet as well.