Books

Odins Ø (Odin's Island)

Odins Ø (Odin's Island) Janne Teller
Pub date 31st January 1999
Original publisher Centrum, 1999; Gyldendal, 2008 (Denmark)
International publishers Actes Sud (France), Iperborea (Italy), Maeva (Spain), Norstedts (Sweden)
Publisher (UK) Atlantic Books (WEL)

Sigbrit Holland is driving along a treacherous winter road. Out of nowhere, something looms into view and Sigbrit has to slam on her brakes to avoid it. Investigating, she is unnerved to find an unusually short man - barely one metre tall - frozen to the spot. Unable to leave him there, Sigbrit takes him to the hospital and tries to forget about him. This little man is something of an enigma. As word of his lack of identity (no passport, no social security number and no birth certificate) leaks out, church groups, nationalists, extremists and apparatchiks stake a claim for Odin. Bemused and frightened, Odin's only desire is to return 'home' - as soon as he recollects where that is. But as the conflict, which Odin has unwittingly caused, rises between the different groups, escape becomes surprisingly difficult. Sigbrit realises that she may be the only person who can help him. Chilling in its contemporary relevance, this journey from one man's loss, via religious extremism and political instability to violence and disenfranchisement, takes an unwavering look at what may yet become our own future.#

 

Praise for Odin's Island

‘Odin’s Island is a modern folk tale; one dealing with politics, the media, religion and a war between Denmark and Sweden over an island few people knew existed. The style is timeless, and Teller’s story builds slowly to an ending that is almost like Hans Christian Andersen in its simplicity. ... scarily prescient.’ – The Daily Telegraph

‘With her magic tale, Janne Teller crosses paths of no less than Tolkien and Umberto Eco, and is in tune with as great a narrator as Karen Blixen. But Janne Teller has created her very own universe in the novel Odin’s Island. ... Odin’s Island is a wonderful joy to read.’ – BT

‘An intriguing, often amusing, blend of Nordic mythology and poetry, modern love story, biting social satire, political and religious intrigue, and pure fantasy, all woven into an irresistible narrative. In Odin’s Island, Janne Teller proves herself a master of fantasy, adventure, satire, and magic, of the description and peopling of an imaginary world beyond the quotidian. Odin’s Island deserves a second, even a third reading …’ – World Literature Today

 

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