A Tree Grows in Mostamägg (Det vokser et tre i Mostamägg) is set in the huge Finnskogen forest during the 19th century. The "forest Finns" have their own outcasts, who have to try to survive as best they can.
Britt Karin Larsen writes beautifully, with raw realism and often very movingly about Lina and Taneli’s struggle for survival and the strong bonds with nature from which they draw both their strength and the necessities of life.
‘The author knows a lot about nature and about folk traditions and beliefs. Like many of the characters in her books, she sees the world from a grassroots perspective, like many of her literary characters. Britt Karin Larsen has written a gripping and instructive book.’
‘A Tree Grows in Mostamägg is beautiful and cruel, quiet and very dramatic. The final episode is a genuine cliff-hanger, and an omen of future novels about silent bear hunters, sex-starved women and lost clergymen – hopefully!’
‘Britt Karin Larsen has delivered a strong, excellent novel.’
‘Reading on, one recognises many of Britt Karin Larsen’s masterly authorial skills, developed during her long and prolific career as a writer. A Tree Grows in Mostamägg is a stern novel, but abundantly supplied with the human warmth and linguistic riches that characterise all her best novels.’
‘As dark as a fairy-tale … She chooses her words skilfully and poetically as she writes about harsh conditions, death and grief, but also human warmth and love... it is a cruel and thrilling narrative in a restrained format.’
BORÅS TIDNING, Sweden
‘The author has a God-given skill as a storyteller ... We all share a soft spot for well-constructed stories that are inspired by the past but at no time turn into mere history lessons. A follow-up to the novel about forest Finns in Mostamägg has just been published in Norway – One can only hope that Heidruns have already engaged Joar Tiberg to translate it.’
DAGENS NYHETER, Sweden
‘A poetic tale from Finnskogen … The narrative in A Tree Grows in Mostamägg is incredibly beautifully told – the dark tone has a mysterious depth, scented with soil and conifer needles. One hears the wind in the fir branches. It is high time that we started paying attention to and reading the literature produced in the other Nordic countries, instead of ignoring it, just as backs were turned on the people in Finnskogen.’
UPSALA NYA TIDNING, Sweden
‘Now, she has chosen to write with such intense vividness about the forest Finns, yet another minority that lived on the margins of Norwegian society. Britt Karin Larsen describes this ignored population with warmth. She gives them a dignity of their own. Apparently, this book is the first one in a series – let us hope it is!’
‘Britt Karin Larsen’s prose is sheer poetry and she has a great capacity for engagement.’
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