(heart)able Troll


The Heartless Troll by Øyvind Torseter. Enchanted Lion Books, 2016. Translated by Kari Dickson. 9781592701933. 120p.
Prince Fred’s six older brothers set out into the world to find wives, but on their way home (without Fred’s promised wife), they and their brides were turned to stone. The King finally gives Fred a nervous horse and he sets out to find them. After finding a saxophone in a river and helping an elephant free its trunk from a tree stump, Fred tricks a hungry wolf into setting them on the path to find his brothers. (According to the copyright page, this is a loose retelling of a Norwegian fairytale.)

Enchanted Lion books are always worth checking out — everything they publish is beautiful. This graphic novel in particular has a cartoony protagonist (Fred looks a bit like one of the Moomins) wandering through a colorful, magical landscape to find his brothers and free his princess. It contains the energy of a sketchbook, the drawings won’t overwhelm anyone with their perfection, and the story is easy to follow.

Sarah: I liked that I could see where the artist fixed drawings by layering on pieces of paper. I didn’t know this was something you could do, since I only ever see perfect final images.

Gene’s note: In case you’re keeping score, this is the second book I’ve read in as many weeks there the author had a “Ø” in their name.Wikipedia tells me the Danish pronounce this letter as /øːˀ/ while the Norwegians call it /øː/. (The Swedish variant is Ö.) I’m not sure what any of this means, though these letters create a vaguely heavy metal connotation for me. I blame the music I listened to in the early 80s.