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26 February 2020
Salla Simukka 'Visits' Four Russian Libraries

Salla Simukka, a successful Finnish author writing for young adults, has made herself a name with the so called Snow White trilogy: As Red As Blood, As White as Snow and As Black as Ebony. Three novels about a girl named Lumikki (Snow White in Finnish) have gained international popularity. This is the only crime series by the writer that was translated into Russian. 

You can find Salla Simukka's internationally bestselling novels at Amazon.com, both hardcovers and paperbacks, including a more recent fantasy - Sisterland. However, according to the writer, her great ambition is not only for her books to appear in bookstores, but also to be available in libraries, right at letter 'S', perhaps, side by side with classic crime stories by Georges Simenon. 

Now the crime series by Salla Simukka is enjoying its comeback due to the effort from the National Library of the Komi Republic to promote authors writing in Finno-Ugric languages, stimulating librarians to recommend such authors and encouraging readers to borrow their books.

On 25 February, readers and professionals from four libraries joined in the online conference, Reading with the Author, organized by the National Library of Komi, to learn more about Salla Simukka and her novels and also place this author in the context of modern Nordic literature.

The audience represented readers from the National Library of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous District, the Republic of Udmurtia, the Republic of Mari El and the Republic of Komi. 

Photo: by the National Library of Mari El Republic

The presentation included a video interview kindly recorded by Salla Simukka for her readers in Komi. In her interview she told about the idea for the trilogy, revealed references to Finnish music and poetry in the text, and commented on the fairy tale implications:

"The Snow White trilogy is not a retelling of the fairy tale. It’s not fantasy. It’s something that could happen. It is set in our world, in our time. Everything is realistic…well, if you think James Bond movies are realistic! Things are happening to a seventeen-year-old Finnish girl that I at least hope are not happening to every 17-year-old girl in Finland. The similarities between the books and the fairy tale are mostly in associations and references".

Explaining the readers' interest in languages and cultures, she said, "I think that literature can speak over borders and over different languages. Literature can show that deep inside there are more things that unite us than those that separate us".

Olga Demidenko, leader of the Tip of the Iceberg readers' club
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