(Art by Jeremy Zerfoss)
It’s been a great few weeks at Weirdfictionreview.com—we’ve been posting a ton of amazing content. This week we’re featuring the Finnish writer Johanna Sinisalo, but also check out wonderful material by Edward Gauvin, Matthew Pridham, Nancy Hightower, and Rochita Loenin-Ruiz. (Many thanks to our managing editor, Adam Mills, for making this all happen.)
An essay on Finnish Weird
A significant section of the people who do not read books in these styles have a surprisingly narrow understanding of what these genres entail. For them, the mere mention of the word ‘fantasy’ conjures up visions of a pseudo-Dark Age world inhabited by fairies, spirits, dwarves and dragons and where people used magic swords to fight against the powers of darkness.
An excerpt from her award-winning novel Troll
In the studio I take Pessi in my arms then whisk the Stalkers on to his back legs with a single pull?—?knowing I’d not manage it at a second shot. If Pessi had thought of spreading his hind claws, the jeans wouldn’t have slipped on: the legs would have been torn to shreds. A size to fit a three-foot-six-inch child suits him stunningly. I’ve got the zip and metal button fastened and have twitched his tail through the hole I’ve made in the Stalker backside before he realizes he’s been diddled. Then I throw Pessi?—?now a hissing, whirling ball bristling with razor-sharp claws?—?in front of the backdrop, and I start the automatic camera rolling.
A new, exclusive interview with the author
If I’m brutally honest, I have to mention Carl Barks and his classic Donald Duck comics. Barks had an enormous talent of entertaining with the tools of exaggeration, mystery, bizarre characters and unlimited?–?sometimes very, very weird?–?imagination. In my honest opinion, Carl Barks was one of the greatest writers of 20th century. I have learned to read leafing through Donald Duck comics, and whenever I encounter some of the old stories I first read when I was four or five, I get goosebumps, because I can still recall the excitement and thrill of the first reading in detail.
Also new on the site:
Did you miss it? Rochita Loenin-Ruiz’s fiction and nonfiction:
Hunting for Stories in the Philippines
One thing I immediately learned was this: horror is alive and well in Filipino language publications. I found tales of hauntings and possessions. Murdered spirits come back to avenge their deaths, beautiful white ladies turn into monsters, and creatures of the night feed on innocent flesh. These stories are familiar to every Filipino, for who doesn’t know of the aswang or the tikbalang? What Filipino is unfamiliar with the kapre and the nuno sa punso? Who hasn’t heard of hauntings and blood dripping down the walls?
Of the Liwat’ang Yawa, the Litok-litok and their Prey
In the same year as Dimaano’s book came out, a series of killings took place in the towns of Kalaygo and Layog. The killings resembled those described in Dimaano’s book, and pushed the book further into the spotlight. His thesis was embraced as canon and became the source book for shows like Guni-guni and Mameng Taleng’s Nightside Tales.