Monday, April 26, 2010

Another Published Review!

Fresh off the press: my second published review for Seminary Co-op Bookstore's The Front Table! All about Monika Fagerholm's The American Girl, a Finnish novel written in Swedish and translated by Katarina E. Tucker. From Publisher's Weekly:
This third, unusual novel from Fagerholm (Wonderful Women by the Sea) is a hypnotic coming-of-age story that hinges on a dark but powerful bond between two Finnish girls growing up in the swamplands of outer Helsinki. Born to jet-setter parents, timid young Sandra finds strength by clinging to obstinate, wild-eyed Doris, who is no stranger to dysfunction herself: her mother has a hundred thousand excuses for beating her daughter. The two begin to obsess over an unsolved death that haunts the town. Making up games in abandoned pools, basements, and the muddy marshlands, the girls dress alike and begin to form solipsistic creeds, such as the belief that suffering has developed a hidden power in us that makes it so that we can see what no one else sees. The fractured work can by trying—there's no straight chronology, and sentences are frequently appealingly off-balance (kudos to Tucker for the slick translation)—but Fagerholm's esoteric prose and her omnipotent narrator's eye bring to life a world of ambient longings, cryptic memories, and ethereal figures.
It was every bit as good as it sounds.

And be sure to check out my review for Gert Jonke's The System of Vienna.

Also: pursuant to Richard's request, some more European metal for your enjoyment! The first is "Nemo" by Finland's Nightwish and the second is "July" by Sweden's Katatonia. (Alas, both bands sing in English.)

Stay tuned for my adventures in Disneyland! That place was very . . . surreal?


claire said...

Congratulations!!! :D

JoAnn said...

Congratulations!! The book sounds wonderful, too...

michelle said...

congratulations! Getting published is such a big step. Keep up the good work!

Emily said...

This book sounds so intriguing. I get really into reading this kind of Scandinavian gothic stuff during the summer - will have to keep this one in mind.

And congrats, of course!e

E. L. Fay said...

Thanks everyone! I hope you check this book out!

Frances said...

Congrats! Promise it will get my full attention post-Perec.

Metal Boy was referencing the Go-Gos in comments today leaving me wondering where he actually exists between European metal and your Disneyland adventure. :)

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