Tuuve Aro: Korson purppuraruusu [The purple rose of Korso]

16 January 2012 | Mini reviews, Reviews

Korson purppuraruusu
[The purple rose of Korso]
Kuvitus [Ill. by]: Sanna Mander
Helsinki: WSOY, 2011. 109 p.
ISBN 978-951-0-38052-9
€ 25.70, hardback

Sometimes a book’s appearance is enough to win the reader over. The first children’s novel by writer and film critic Tuuve Aro (born 1973) encourages the belief that things will work out for the best. The book’s positive undertones are also reflected in Mander’s fresh illustrations, which exude retro-nostalgia for the 1950s and 1960s in shades of orange, black, and brown. Tallulah, a jungle princess, turns up unexpectedly to sort out the complicated affairs of Topi, a schoolboy who is being bullied. Tallulah comes into the suburb of Korso from the silver screen, out of Woody Allen’s film The Purple Rose of Cairo. The jungle princess helps Topi to see the bleak suburb as an exotic habitat where adventures are waiting just round the corner. The adult reader gets to enjoy a few carefully chosen references to major cinematic landmarks. Aro eschews problem-centred realism and angst, even though the children’s problems are an indirect result of decisions taken by adults. The Tallulah figure incorporates a hefty dose of anarchy, familiar from Astrid Lindgren’s Pippi Longstocking.
Translated by Fleur Jeremiah and Emily Jeremiah

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