Book - 2011
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Watching her parents struggle through her grandmother's terminal illness, Anna listens to family memories while pondering the fates of passersby before learning the story of her mother's nanny, about whom her grandparents have been silent for years.
Publisher: New York : Other Press, 2011.
ISBN: 9781590515006
Characteristics: 358 p. ; 21 cm.
Additional Contributors: Rogers, Lola
Pulkkinen, Riikka 1980- Totta.


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melwyk Apr 10, 2012

But I still believe, even now, that true revolutions last a lifetime -- they're always quiet, and they happen when no one's looking.

melwyk Apr 10, 2012

True rebellion is enjoying your existence no matter the circumstances.

melwyk Apr 10, 2012

Relationships between people are like dense forests. Or maybe it’s the people themselves who are forests, trail after trail opening up within them, trails that are kept hidden from others, opening only by chance to those who happen upon them.


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melwyk Apr 10, 2012

This Finnish story moves back and forth in time, from the current day perspective of Anna, a young woman, to that of her grandparents when they were in their prime. Her grandfather, an artist, had a clichéd affair with Eeva, his daughter's nanny many years ago -- the repercussions of which are now being stirred up again, as her grandmother Elsa is dying of cancer and tells Anna about it.

The story explores relationships past and present, between people now far distant from one another and between people at different ages.

Despite the fact that this novel is about betrayal, death, depression, sadness, loss and much more, it is not a dark story. It feels spacious, open and yet complex... it shifts between time periods seamlessly, and draws the connections between people with a sure hand.

In any case, I did find this a good read, though it took me a little while to get into it. It began slowly, but was so full of gorgeous depictions of Finland that I really did find it absorbing. It gave me a picture of a tangled and dark emotional dilemma, even while the Finnish setting seemed saturated with light, something I didn't really associate with Finland. The language was also very quotable.

Full review at The Indextrious Reader


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