Monday, September 21, 2015

The True Deceiver

The True Deceiver, by Tove Jansson

Tove Jansson is always worth reading, and this is an intriguing short novel that I think is also her darkest.

In a remote village that is nearly cut off by winter snows, Katri Kling is an outsider.  She lives with her simple brother Mats and her menacing, unnamed dog, and she's been planning for a long time.  Mats' security is her goal; her method will be to take over the life of Anna Aemelin, an artist. 

I enjoy Jansson's prose a lot, with its extreme particularity and focus on certain things.  I think a lot of her own thoughts about art and questions about what obligations the artist has to the audience show up in Anna's character, which is neat.  The main theme, though, is deception: what constitutes honesty or deception?  Each woman considers herself to be honest, but that doesn't mean that they always tell the truth.

Excellent short novel--pick it up if you can.


Lory said...

I'm glad you liked this one. I thought it was brilliant.

Anonymous said...

Books about honesty and deception are always super fascinating to me. So maybe this can be my first Tove Jansson!