The True Deceiver, by Tove Jansson

Another short book by Jansson, this time an unnerving novel set in a small Swedish community where a writer is exploited by one of her neighbours; lots of unpacking of memories and stories and relationships. Very intense, and very convincing, perhaps the most sparsely written of her novels that I have yet read, but also very expressive. It was interesting to read this about the same time as I read Siri Hustvedt’s The Sorrows of an American, which attempts a similar set of themes on a broader canvas, but carries it off nothing like as well.

One thought on “The True Deceiver, by Tove Jansson

  1. Very well said sir. I always loved this, from the same play:

    Now it’s high watermark
    And floodtide in the heart
    And time to go…

    What’s left to say?
    Suspect too much sweet talk
    But never close your mind.

    It was a fortunate wind
    That blew me here. I leave
    Half-ready to believe
    That a crippled trust might walk
    And the half-true rhyme is love.

    An enormous loss.

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