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Tove Jansson (The Illustrators)

Paul Gravett


An appreciation of the life and art of Tove Jansson, creator of the much-loved Moomin books

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Tove Jansson drew her first Moomin on an outhouse wall, before committing Moominvalley to the page in the 1940s. This book offers a fresh, insightful appreciation of her life and art, from imaginative child to art student, painter, author, cartoonist and illustrator, bohemian lesbian and Finnish cultural icon. Jansson’s flourishing Moomin books are examined in detail, as are her interpretations of such classics as Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and The Hunting of the Snark, and J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit.


'Tove Jansson is one of the most original, versatile, philosophically dextrous, warm and generous artists ever to have graced this world'
Ali Smith

Art Review

'Contains a wealth of illustrations... A sensitive portrayal of Finland's most widely translated author, this itself is a work of art'
Shelf Awareness (starred review)

'A celebration of Finland’s most widely translated author'
Times Literary Supplement

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: Hardback

Size: 24.5 x 18.7 cm

Extent: 112 pp

Illustrations: 106

Publication date: 6 October 2022

ISBN: 9780500094334

About the Author

Paul Gravett is a writer, critic, curator, publisher and broadcaster who has worked in the comics industry since 1981. He is author of many books, including Graphic Novels: Stories to Change Your Life, Comics Art and Mangasia, the latter published by Thames & Hudson in 2017. He is also the author of Posy Simmonds in the Illustrators series. Gravett is co-director of Comica, the London International Comics Festival.

List of Contributors

Quentin Blake, Claudia Zeff