Wednesday, October 12, 2011

My Husband Steinn

Novelette by Eleanor Arnason

Signy bought a house in rural Iceland so she could have peace and quiet to work on her novel. But various dead animals show up on her doorstep, courtship gifts from a troll, and she realizes peace is hard to come by. Signy ends up befriending the wife of the unfaithful troll, and is drawn into a meeting with the troll queen regarding Iceland's public works projects driving trolls and elves from their homes.

The best thing about this story is the wry, fairy tale writing style. Especially in a story about women laughing off their men to deal with the very modern problem of habitat conservation. The second best thing is the original bit of Norse mythology Arnason invents about Loki inventing the apple corer.

Although the style had nothing to do with Dunsany, he's the writer I couldn't stop thinking of at the end of the story, with the procession of trolls and other mythological creatures fleeing their homes. Something about the past fleeing from human encroachment and mystery leaving the world. Any comparison to Dunsany is a good thing from me.

3.5 trolls out of 5 enjoy cookies.

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