October 03, 2006

A book review: Not Before Sundown

I love discovering new books, and I try to read as much as I can. Unfortunately not fast enough to keep up with my ever increasing To Be Read-stack though. The second round in Baikonur is proving to be more productive when it comes to books than back in May at least.

My most recently read book is one of those new discoveries. Not before Sundown is an English translation of an award-winning Finnish novel, published in 2000 (translation in 2003) by Johanna Sinisalo. It was sent to me about half a year ago as part of an international book barter and I had finally gotten round to reading/finishing it yesterday.

The story is about a young man who finds a troll cub abandoned on the street and he decides to take it home. This clearly affects his life in all aspects but I won't give away too much about the plot (there's more information on the Amazon-link I'm sure). Besides the originality of the story what mostly struck me was the creativitiy of the story format. Not settling on just one narrator, the author has chosen five different ones. Although this might seem confusing she only gives each narrator one or two pages. Sometimes even only two lines. In between are excerpts from 'sources' on trolls and folklore, giving some distance and context to the story. As the plot moves chronologically, you view some events almost simultaneously through different eyes making it very dynamic.

Needless to say, this was a very good read and a surprising discovery - the ones that I like best of course. Looking forward to the next one!


matti said...

Lijkt me een bijzonder boek. Kan ik het een keer lenen? ;-)

machiruda said...

hmm, dat kan misschien wel geregeld worden ;)