Since I mentioned Karin Tidbeck’s forthcoming novel the other day, here is an excellent short movie based on her surreal, Kafkaesque story “Who is Arvid Pekon?”, which is part of the “Jagannath” collection. The short film is written and directed by Patrik Eriksson, stars Andrzej Mastalerz as Arvid Pekon, Anna Moskal as the Supervisor and Anna Seniuk as Subject 3426 and is produced by the Polish National Film School and NUR Foundation.
Back in 2012 Karin Tidbeck made her English debut with the short story collection, “Jagganath”, published by Cheeky Frawg Books. Spinning Scandinavian folklore and mythology, spanning over a plentitude of speculative fiction sub-genres, but leaning more towards weird fiction, “Jagganath” received its share of recognition, the collection won the Crawford Award, was nominated for the World Fantasy Award and appeared on the honor list of the Tiptree Award, while one of the stories, “Augusta Prima”, won the Science Fiction and Fantasy Translation Award. Since then Karin Tidbeck’s fiction has appeared on venues such as Tor.com, Shadows & Tall Trees, Uncanny Magazine or Lightspeed Magazine and in anthologies such as “The Starlit Wood”, “Fearsome Magics” or “The Starry Wisdom Library”, but this year sees the publication of Karin Tidbeck’s debut novel, “Amatka”. The English version of “Amatka”, originally published in Swedish in 2012, is due to be released on June 27th by Vintage Books and considering the already mentioned short story collection and the synopsis of the novel I am very curious to see what “Amatka” holds in store. I mean, a wintry location always fascinates me (I love winter, although I am not sure I would like it so much if I lived in a place where this season rules most of the year) and a story involving language, which apparently can’t be taken for granted here, artistic creation, an investigation and what looks like a totalitarian regime are elements that intrigue me greatly.
A surreal debut novel set in a world shaped by language in the tradition of Margaret Atwood and Ursula K. Le Guin.
Vanja, an information assistant, is sent from her home city of Essre to the austere, wintry colony of Amatka with an assignment to collect intelligence for the government. Immediately she feels that something strange is going on: people act oddly in Amatka, and citizens are monitored for signs of subversion.
Intending to stay just a short while, Vanja falls in love with her housemate, Nina, and prolongs her visit. But when she stumbles on evidence of a growing threat to the colony, and a cover-up by its administration, she embarks on an investigation that puts her at tremendous risk.
In Karin Tidbeck’s world, everyone is suspect, no one is safe, and nothing—not even language, nor the very fabric of reality—can be taken for granted. Amatka is a beguiling and wholly original novel about freedom, love, and artistic creation by a captivating new voice.
Looking upon the year that passed I have to say 2016 was not very kind to me. For the most part the events gravitating around me were not something I wish to remember and for days in the row I was left without much energy, motivation and inspiration because of them. Fortunately, 2016 was not entirely bad, there were things that lifted my spirit and helped me look more closely to the brighter side.
After a while I’ve started to miss engaging with my passions, these became casualties for the better part of the last year, and slowly I managed to put them back on their feet. Reading was again as pleasant as it used to be (I dragged over a couple of books last year, but that’s no fault of them) and in consequence engaging in conversations about books and movies followed up shortly, while my fingers started itching for writing about them. Therefore I feel ready now to revive my blog, with a slight change though. Taking into consideration some aspects, I’ve decided to move house for my blog. First, I believe the old title was a bit restrictive; true, fantasy remains on top of my reading lists, but I do love speculative fiction in general and I feel the old title didn’t show that entirely. Also, there are my occasional ventures outside the genre to be considered as well. Second, there is some filler content on the old address that didn’t satisfy me as much as the other entries so I wish to eliminate those entirely. After all, if I am not happy how I did some things what is the point in keep doing the same? Last, a change of host, since the previous one was not as fun to handle as it was in the beginning and I would like to see what this one has to offer (I hope I can wrap my head around it).
With certainty I don’t see this small change as a new beginning (the former address will remain linked here too), only as an adjustment, a continuation of my project, hopefully with a little improvement on the side as well. So, without further ado, I welcome you to Dark Wolf’s Paraphernalia.