An intimate, enchanting collection of Tove Jansson’s correspondence that shines a fascinating light both on a restless, bohemian soul and the Helsinki milieu in which she was immersed. Including letters to friends, family and literary colleagues, this is a revealing yet sensitively collated volume.
A BBC Radio 4 Book of the Week
"I find myself talking to you about all the great joys, all the agonies, all my thoughts..." - Letter to Eva Konikova, 1946
Out of the thousands of letters Tove Jansson wrote a cache remains that she addressed to her family, her dearest confidantes, and her lovers, male and female. Into these she spilled her innermost thoughts, defended her ideals and revealed her heart.
To read these letters is both an act of startling intimacy and a rare privilege. Penned with grace and humour, Letters from Tove offers an almost seamless commentary on Tove Jansson's life as it unfolds within Helsinki's bohemian circles and her island home. Spanning fifty years between her art studies and the height of Moomin fame, we share with her the bleakness of war; the hopes for love that were dashed and renewed, and her determined attempts to establish herself as an artist.
Vivid, inspiring and shining with integrity, Letters from Tove shows precisely how an aspiring and courageous young artist can evolve into a very great one.
Publisher: Sort of Books
Number of pages: 496
Weight: 760 g
Dimensions: 220 x 144 x 46 mm
Tove Jansson was a genius, a woman of profound wisdom and great artistry - Philip Pullman
Her tales of Mominvalley are really only half the story of Jansson's quiet creative genius...her novels, short story collections and memoir writing form an equally shining achievement - Ali Smith
A unique and authentic voice that speaks to the reader across time and culture, heart to heart - Boyd Tonkin, The Independent
Tove Jansson is one of the greatest children's writers there has ever been - Sir Terry Pratchett
[The letters] cover war, fame and her first infatuation with another woman...all related in a voice that is funny, gracious, intimate - The Observer
Witty, shrewd and hugely entertaining - Boyd Tonkin, Spectator
Letters from Tove offers readers the privilege of spending time inside an intelligent, creative, curious, generous, funny, unsentimental mind. Few books have given me as much pure pleasure this year. - Anna Carey, Irish Times
There have been several major biographies of Tove, but reading her letters (to her mother, friends, lovers) over 50 years was a revelation. I thought: "Finally, it's her own authentic voice." - Sophia Jansson, Radio Times
In Letters from Tove there are treasures aplenty - cultural history gems as well as biographical revelations, all related in a voice that's funny, gracious, intimate. - Hephzibah Anderson, Guardian
It's no surprise to discover from this marvellous collection that Tove Jansson wrote such wonderful, heartfelt, interesting letters. - Caroline Sanderson, Bookseller
Reading these letters, you will gradually fall under the illusion that they are addressed to you. This is how inviting, candid, and quietly dazzling Tove Jansson's prose is in her correspondence. ... At the end of the book, you will feel that you have a new, very close friend. - Hernan Diaz, author of In the Distance
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