"The Moomins? What's that?" friends ask when I mention these books. I've been recommending the Moomin books to everyone and interestingly enough no one seems to have heard of them. To be honest, I wasn't familiar with them either until recently. I kept coming across the Moomins' books by Tove Jansson while researching for appropriate books for my almost 6-year-old son so when I saw them at my local bookshop, Fully Booked, I just couldn't resist.
The Moomins are happy and whimsical characters in a series of books and comic strips written by Swedish-Finnish author, Tove Jansson. They were originally published in Swedish in Finland. They are a family of trolls but far from appearing scary, they are white and roundish with large snouts that make them resemble hippopotamuses. They are carefree and adventurous and live in a house in Moominvalley in the forests in Finland. Fun and delightful things seem to always happen to the Moomins and their friends.
The Moomins are characters that are so well loved by those that were lucky enough to read them as a child. Many fans claim that they've never forgotten these books. The Moomins have stayed with them through the years and they've been an integral part in shaping how they see the world and certain things such as family, friendship and even hospitality. Yes, the Moomins are hospitable creatures and welcome just about anyone into their home.
"Moomintroll’s mother and father always welcomed all their friends in the same quiet way, just adding another bed and putting another leaf in the dining-room table. And so Moominhouse was rather full — a place where everyone did what they liked and seldom worried about to-morrow. Very often unexpected and disturbing things used to happen, but nobody ever had time to be bored, and that is always a good thing."Right now we are reading a chapter every night of Finn Family Moomintroll and I can happily report that our whole family is completely charmed by the Moomins. They are simply adorable!
Some lovely quotations from the Moomin books:
It looks rather ordinary," said the Snork. "Unless you consider that a top hat is always somewhat extraordinary, of course.
At times he thought he could clearly see the trail that Snufkin had made on the sodden ground. The tracks skipped and danced here and there, and were difficult to follow. On occasion they took great leaps and even crossed paths. "He must have been feeling quite happy," thought Moomintroll. "I believe that right here he has even done a somersault."
"What is it?" said Moomintroll. Discoveries were his very favourite thing (after mysterious paths, swimming and secrets, that is).
"I think I'm beginning to understand now," said Moomintroll slowly. "You aren't a collector any longer, are you? Now you are just an owner. That's nowhere near as much fun." "No," said the Hemulen thoroughly dejected. "It is most decidedly nowhere near as much fun."
Moomintroll closed his eyes and surmised, "How different we all are, really."