Book #71: Finn Family Moomintroll (1948)

FinnFamilyMoominaka: Trollkarlens hatt
author: Tove Jansson
language: English (translated from Swedish)
length: 153 pages
finished reading on: 11 August 2014

This was the next in my summer reading. I think I read this as a kid, or at least I assume I did, since it’s such a classic. Like the last Moomin book I read, it’s very episodic, with each chapter often making up a whole story in itself, and only very loose continuity between the stories.

All the stories in this are ones that I’ve seen before in Moomin’s other adaptations, such as the TV show or the comic versions I read a while back (and probably reviewed on here at the time). They include the magic hobgoblin’s hat, also in the first episode of the anime, and the trip to the island of the Hattifatteners.

For me, the main humour came completely unintentionally from some of the old style language that was used. I giggled, for instance, when Snufkin or Moomintroll were described as gay and queer several times, which of course matches exactly with the fact that they often behave like an old married couple.

The book is, after all, children’s literature, so it was quite easy to read overall. I didn’t have any major complaints about it, perhaps only that I wasn’t a fan of the episodic nature of the book, or the way that conflicts would be introduced on one page and quickly resolved on the next, meaning that the book never really established any sense of suspense, or that I was never worried for the characters.

I think I want to continue and read the next book in the series, though, so this could be considered a success for that reason alone.

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