Salla Simukka: As White As Snow

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Salla Simukka’s Snow White trilogy has been enormously popular and has been translated into dozens of languages. I happened upon the second part of the trilogy, As White As Snow, and unfortunately it didn’t really woo me.

Salla Simukka As White As Snow

Author: Salla Simukka
Publisher: Tammi 2013
Category: YA fiction
Original language: Finnish
Rating: 3/5

HelMet Reading Challenge 2017: number 2. A book discussed in reading blogs.

The novel is well written and full of action, but lacking motivation and a goal. It is easy to read as a stand-alone novel, I didn’t feel like I was missing anything not having read the first part. In fact it is hard to see how this part adds anything to the series. The reader doesn’t receive any new information regarding Lumikki’s family, which is depicted as secretive to the extreme and which seems to be the main mystery of the series.

What bothered me the most was the lack of credibility of the plot. A teenager like Lumikki – albeit 18 years old already – may make unorthodox decisions, but in this story her actions are not really based on the nature of her character. In fact, the decisions Lumikki makes, seem quite the opposite of what might be expected based on everything the reader learns about her. The final resolution also comes a bit too quick and easy to my taste.

As the number two of a trilogy this book seems to be just an unavoidable stepping stone to the final climax. I’m not quite sure, whether I’ll give a try to the two other parts. If for just one reason, I might do it to find out whether this trilogy has any connection to the Snow White fairy tale, as implied in the name and the MC’s name (translates to Snow White). In this part I didn’t find anything pointing to that direction.

Susan

 

“Lumikki Andersson is backpacking in Prague, where the weather is scorching hot. A girl approaches her in a small café and claims to be her half sister. Lumikki’s parents seem to be hiding a secret concerning the family’s past, so the girl’s claim rouses Lumikki’s interest. Despite her erratic behaviour, the girl manages to persuade Lumikki to join a religious family community. Later it turns out that the members are no relation to each other, after all. But it is not until Lumikki learns that the cult leaders are planning mass suicide that she understands just how dangerous the cult is. Furthermore, someone is planning to profit from the tragedy. Lumikki gets acquainted with the streets and graveyards of Prague when she is forced to run for her life to prevent the tragedy. The religion of the cult is not pure; and innocence is not as white as snow.”

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Want to Publish Books from Finland? You’re in for a Treat!

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Finnish literature is taking a big step forward in the international publishing scene. There are several new authors, who’ve signed plenty of foreign rights deals, even movie options have been sold to Hollywood. This is quite an achievement from such a small language and such a different publishing market from many other countries.

Finnish Literature and Agents by Read, Write and Publish

FILI helps foreign publishers

Behind every successful author, there’s a determined agent and publisher. But that’s not all. Besides excellent literature, the new Finnish success has benefited from the back up of the Finnish Literature Exchange (FILI), an export organization awarding grants to more than 300 different projects every year totalling in 600 000 euros. Typically these grants go to translation and publishing costs of foreign prints of Finnish books. If you’re considering to translate and publish a Finnish book, check with FILI – they might give you a grant!

Our Dear Neighbours Again!

Despite the recent surge of Finnish literature out to the world, we’re still far behind our neighbours in the west. As the Finnish literature exports was valued to appr. 2,3 million euros in 2015, the Swedish exports were in the region of 15 million euros already in the 2010. The Swedes have been rolling on the crime wave, but the Finns have found the YA fiction boom. Such authors as Salla Simukka (Snow White Trilogy) are paving the way for a new kind of northern literature.

The authors need help in telling the world about their books. Finland has long been a lonely wolf in the world filled with literary agents – there hasn’t been any. In the domestic markets Finnish authors can still send in their unsolicited manuscripts to all publishers. Traditionally foreign rights sales have been taken care of by the publishing houses, but now there are a few independent literary agents working in the field. This market is still very small as is evident from the value of the exports.

New Agents Wanted

However, potential is there. FILI arranged yesterday a seminar to plant the seeds of a new literary agent career into the minds of interested participants. While the Swedes are talking about hundreds of titles being exported every year, the Finns still move in dozens. More agents are needed to bring the market on the level it deserves.

Besides the fiction, non-fiction could prove an interesting field in this perspective. Non-fiction books are seldom translated from Finnish into other languages (while the opposite is very common). Publishers outside Finland are happy to take in good ideas for non-fiction titles, but produce them later on by themselves. This can be prevented by offering content that cannot be reproduced by anyone other than the original author.

Susan

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