Boel Westin

Tove Jansson Life, Art, Words

The Finnish-Swedish writer and artist Tove Jansson achieved worldwide fame as the creator of the Moomin stories, written between 1945 and 1970 and still in print in more than twenty languages. However, the Moomins were only a part of her prodigious output. Already admired as a painter, cartoonist and illustrator, she would go on to write a series of classic novels and short stories. She remains Scandinavia's best loved author. In this meticulously researched biography, Boel Westin draws together the many threads of Tove Jansson's artistic and writing life: from her emergence as a talented artist and illustrator, through her extraordinary creation of the Moomins, and the later years of writing novels such as The Summer Book. She charts, too, the artist's personal story: growing up in Helsinki and studying in Stockholm and Paris; her ambivalence about marriage, and joyful relationships with women; and her summers on a solitary island with her long-term partner, Tuulikki Pietilä. Based on numerous conversations with Tove and her circle, and unprecedented access to her journals, letters and personal archives, Tove Jansson: Life, Art, Words offers a rare and privileged insight into the world of a writer whom Philip Pullman described, simply, as 'a genius'.
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