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Tales from Moominvalley [Illustrated] [Paperback]

Tove Jansson
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
RRP: 6.99
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Book Description

27 Feb 1973

If you found a tiny golden dragon with green paws, would you know what to do with it?

Well, Moomintroll thinks he knows what to do. But when he takes his new-found pet home, things don't quite work out as planned!

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Frequently Bought Together

Tales from Moominvalley + Moominland Midwinter (Puffin Books) + Moominsummer Madness (Puffin Books)
Price For All Three: 15.09

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Product details

  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin (27 Feb 1973)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140306099
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140306095
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 18 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 76,508 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

TOVE JANSSON (1914-2001) is revered around the world as one of the foremost children's authors of the twentieth century for her illustrated Moomin chapter books.

Product Description


“The Moomin books make for both splendid bedtime read-alouds and solitary savoring.” —"Wall Street Journal"“Fillyjonks, Mymbles, Hemulens, Moomins, Woodies, and creeps dance through the pages, bringing a refreshingly alive, original world to life.”    —"The Green Man Review"“Beautifully written and illustrated.”    —"The Sunday Times" (London)“The books . . . belong on the shelf next to classics like "A Wrinkle in Time" and "The Phantom Tollbooth."”   —"Entertainment Weekly" “A lost treasure now rediscovered . . . A surrealist masterpiece.”   —Neil Gaiman“Jansson was a genius of a very subtle kind. These simple stories resonate with profound and complex emotions that are like nothing else in literature for children or adults: intensely Nordic, and completely universal.”   —Philip Pullman“Tove Jans

About the Author

Tove Jansson was born in Finland in 1914. She began her career as a cartoonist and went on to write and illustrate many books for adults and children. She drew her first Moomin in the 1930s, just for fun, and in 1945 he became a character in a children's story. Tove became world-famous for her Moomin books which began with Comet in Moominland in 1946, closely followed by Finn Family Moomintroll and six more Moomin adventures. Tove Jansson received many prestigious awards during her lifetime, including the international Hans Christian Andersen Medal. She died in 2001, aged 87. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lessons from Moomin Valley? 26 April 2009
Unlike the other books that contribute to the Moomin series proper, "Tales from Moomin Valley" is a collection of nine short stories, perhaps equal in length to a chapter in the other texts. This book, along with "Moominland Midwinter" mark the turning point in the series when Tove Jansson shifts to deeper introspection, often termed her move towards adult writing, but the book presents a series of neat cameos, fairly readily interpretable for children, drawing on principle and not so familiar characters from the established Moomin series. This comparative absence of the Moomin family leads to a greater emphasis on the ideas presented withing the book. As can be expected on the basis of the other Moomin books, emotional ties to person and place, and by contrast isolation and loneliness (and the implication of these extremes for the individual) are central themes to the book.

The book is like a series of passing acquaintances, in that each story has its meaning, and many parallels can be found between their themes, but each remains a separate passing encounter. The potential for the depth of the book's themes to leave the reader unsettled is somehow not realised, in that each story reaches a resolution, in which a fragile but workable peace with a changed set of circumstances is established, and differences of opinion are let be in favour of appreciating the ability of particularly individual individuals to nevertheless still manage to accommodate enough to maintain ties to each other.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Enchanting tales and captivating characters! 30 Jan 2001
By A Customer
This is a collection of beautiful tales which will captivate a new reader and introduce them to a wonderful world.This delightful book is also essential reading for anyone whose heart already lies in Moominvalley with Moomintroll, his friends and family! Find out who the strange Hattifattiners are and where they are heading, why the fillyjonk was afraid of disasters, the name of Snufkins new friend and how a dragon broke moomintrolls heart!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Tales from Moominvalley is, as its title suggests, not a cohesive novel but a collection of nine short stories, each centering on a different character. Dedicated to Tove Janssons's niece, these stories are wonderfully universal, in that they are imaginative and wistful, but often filled with some extraordinarily deep dilemmas and themes. Jansson's clear, unsentimental writing style gives space to all of the diverse stories very well.

One of the stories is about a Filijonk who lives in a house by the sea, and cannot shake off the horrible fear that some catastrophe will soon befall her. Another, one of my favourites, is about a quiet hemulen who settles down in his aunt's abandoned park, longing for peace but not getting it when the children of Moomin Valley befriend him. Perhaps the two most well-known stories are The Invisible Child and the Christmas Tree, both stories where we follow the Moomin family as a whole, as opposed to the other stories which are far more individual-character based.

My favourite story is "The Secret of the Hattifatteners," which follows Moominpappa and is, in fact, a vital character development for him. We follow him in his longing to get away from the ordinary family life and joining the eerie, silent Hattifatteners on their cruises over the oceans. Moominpappa, always a fascinating character in my book, goes through a big change that feels very natural thanks to the masterful writing. It remains one of my favourite Moomin stories of all time.

In addition to all this, Jansson's illustrations accompany us through the pages as well. This time, however, Jansson's style was very loose and seemed to have been mostly done with thick markers. It fits the rough, warm attitude of the book very well.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Comfort reading 14 Feb 2013
By Jane C
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Tove Jansson's Moomin family have all the usual ups and downs of any family life, but what really shines through is their loyalty and total trust in each other and their friends. As with all the books in the series, there are funny things, sad things and interesting things happening and while it is ostensibly a children's book, I would recommend it to children of all ages (i.e. adults as well). For a comforting read that also helps you remember the blessings you don't always count - go to your bookshelf and reach for a Moomin!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful Stories 8 Dec 2009
By A Noyes
Tove Jansson is a wonderful, humane, sympathetic, sensible, non-cloying, delightful writer. These stories are among my favourite pieces of literature. In my view they are for anyone of any age.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great condition arrived in time 24 Jan 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great book for adults becoming parents and reminded me of my own childhood experiences in the great outdoors- good stuff
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5.0 out of 5 stars Moomins 4 Dec 2013
By Denise
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Bought for small child as I absolutely love the Moomins and I am hoping that she will love them too.
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5.0 out of 5 stars All Killers. No Fillers. 3 Dec 2013
Tove Jansson's famous Moomin series of children's books runs the whole range of human emotions, from brilliantly joyous happiness ("Finn Family Moomintroll") to aching, beautiful melancholy ("Moominvalley in November".) Not bad for a collection of stories about a set of silly furry fantasy creatures.

I suppose this book, "Tales From Moominvalley", is pitched about half way between the two extremes of joy and despair but they are probably a bit closer to the serious, brittle "...November" than the sunny "Finn Family..". The nine stories feature many of the established Moomin characters in a variety of situations. They all have one thing in common, they are absolutely perfect.

Not a word is out of place in the wise, funny and engaging tales. All are brilliant. My favourites are "Cedric", featuring philosopher-tramp Snufkin trying to teach the self centred Sniff how possessions don't bring happiness and "The Hemulen Who Loved Silence" where, at last , we see a sympathetic Hemulen-usually these are representations of crass soul-less materialists.

Just in case writing perfection isn't enough for you, Tove Jansson throws in a large number of top notch pen and ink illustrations. Again, difficult to single any of these out but the Fillyjonk watching the twisting tornado (p59)and Moominpappa sailing through an angry sea (p141) are great.
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