Sjón (Iceland)

Sjón (1962) is one of the most popular Icelandic writers. He was barely 16 when he published his first book of poetry and in his teenage years also worked with a surrealist group called Medúsa that was an important influence on the Icelandic cultural landscape. In addition to poetry, novels, plays and screenplays, Sjón is also a songwriter, working, among others, with Björk, whom he collaborated with on the film Dancer in the Dark (Danser i mørket) - where Sjón and Lars von Trier wrote the lyrics to the Oscar-nominated soundtrack - as well as with lyrics for her recent albums. Sjón has received numerous awards, including the Nordic Council's Literary Prize and the Icelandic Literary Proze.

The Blue Fox (Skugga-Baldur)

It's 1883 and we're in Iceland, accompanying a priest as he spends days hunting a fox that never gives up despite the cold, the heavy snow and frequent landslides and uses all its senses to try to escape. The narrator then takes us to the time before the story, to the moment when the priest is burying Fridrik's great love Abba, a woman with Down syndrome whom he had rescued years before. Sjón takes the reader on a poetic journey of Icelandic forests and the dark secrets of the people who live at the edge of the polar circle where, standing on the edge of an existential abyss, they show their true colours.

Moonstone: The Boy Who Never Was

Mánasteinn: drengurinn sem aldrei var til is the story of Máni Steinn, a young man living on the margins of society on the margin of the world. Máni is a homosexual in 1918 Reykjavik who spend most of his time in the cinema, which represents a channel between the distant Iceland and Europe that is being ravaged by the First World War. The country is overrun by the Spanish flu, and there's always a lingering fear that the war might spread to the far north of Europe. Máni, however, remains stuck between the imaginary world of cinema and the harsh reality of a society that rejects him.

Translation: Anja Golob

Anja Golob (1976*): after studying Philosophy and Comparative Literature at the Faculty of Arts in Ljubljana (Slovenia), she worked as a theatre critic for 14 years, mainly publishing in Večer, the 2nd biggest Slovene daily. She now works as poet, writer, translator and dramaturg for contemporary art and dance performances. In October 2013, together with 4 brave individuals, she started a small publishing house VigeVageKnjige, where she's the editor in chief.

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(Cankarjeva založba 2016, 24,94€)