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The Library of Babel

A Spin-off of http://bookwormshead.blogspot.co.uk

Popular Music from Vittula - Laurie Thompson, Mikael Niemi I've got a kind of obsession for Scandinavian literature, having lived for a little while in Norway.

And yet I have to say that Swedish literature has more to offer than Norwegian one with such great novelists like Stig Dagerman, Lars Gustafsson and Torgny Lindgren.

Mikael Niemi belongs to a new generation of Swedish authors and -as I suppose from his surname, he has finnish roots.-
This book is a funny and easy reading which takes place in an exotic northern land, that part of Sweden on the Bothnia gulf. It's here, among creeks and forests and not much more, that a bunch of local young guys decide to play rock 'n roll.

They listen to old vynils by Elvis and Beatles trying to play the same chords and mispronouncing the same words, building their instruments by themselves and so on.

It's the kind of novel about music as an interpretation of life that you can really appreciate if you have read The Commitments by Roddy Doyle or The James Dean Garage Band by Rick Moody.

Moreover you will surely learn something on how people used to live in Sweden during the 60s and the 70s far from the big cities, apparently in the Middle of a Nowhere Land.