It's only February and already I'm running slightly behind on my aim of reading a book a month, as part of The Year in Books. Oops. If you read my post in January, the book I set myself was The Winter Book by Tove Jansson. Having read The Summer Book I was really interested to read more of Jansson's work for adults, and this collection of short stories jumped out at me. I can happily say I wasn't disappointed. It was such a gentle and almost unassuming read. Partly autobiographical, the book is simple in its language but so very deep in its musings on life and death. The short story form suited me perfectly, too. Ideal for dipping into, I could easily pick it up and be transported to Finland whenever time allowed such an adventure. Written in three parts - Snow, Flotsam and Jetsam, Travelling Light - the short stories sways from winter, to summer and finally to maturity. These collected stories are warm, filled with wit and wisdom and were a complete joy to read.
And so now onto February. Laura is running this month slightly differently, with a good number of lovely folks reading the same book - The Trouble with Goats and Sheep. However, since I'd already picked my lovely Nordic books for the year, I'm going ahead with what I planned - Out Stealing Horses, by Per Petterson. Set in Norway, it comes highly recommended and from the pages I've dipped into already I think it's going to make a good read. The blurb sounds pretty enticing: "Set in the easternmost region of Norway, Out Stealing Horses begins with an ending. Sixty-seven-year-old Trong has settled into a rustic cabin in an isolate area to live the rest of his life with a quiet deliberation. A meeting with his only neighbour, however, forces him to reflect on that fateful summer." I'm so looking forward to getting stuck in!
I'll be back in March to let you know how I get on with this lovely novel, and to introduce my next book. Do you know of any classic Nordic tomes, or authors I should add to my list? I'd love any recommendations - just leave a comment below or tweet me!
Photo shot and styled by Ruth Garner for Gathered Cheer