Updated: Apr 4, 2019
A new Icelandic Children's book is coming out in the USA in April. The Casket of Time by Andri Snær Magnason. This book was a best seller in Iceland, winner of the Icelandic Literary Award and has been reaching children of all ages. Andri is know for his humor and wild imagination, he makes dramatic and thoughtful books taking on big issues and questions. Often weaving Nordic mythology and classic fairy-tale myths with contemporary issues.
The Casket of Time is woven from two stories. On one level we have a mad king that has conquered the world. He is still not satisfied and wants to have more TIME than other people. His life will just pass and his beautiful princess will grow old like they were normal peasants. Nobody can help him until some dwarfs come with something that looks like a glass casket. It is woven with spidersilk, so densely that time can not penetrate the walls. The other part of the story takes place in our world when a magic TimeBox has been sold to people. You can put it together with an Allen wrench and use the TimeBox to wait for better times. The book is available at Amazon (or click here).
Andri Snær Magnason is the only Icelandic Children's book author to break through the US translation wall, but his other book, The Story of The Blue Planet has been published in 35 languages and came out in English in 2012. A classic in the mind of a whole generation in Iceland.
You can support writing in Icelandic, good literature for young people and independent publishing by reading the books, and donating to your school or public library, as they probably have no children's literature from Iceland in the shelves. The Story of the Blue Planet is used by teachers all over the world to discuss important planetary themes.
A book written in a 1000 year old language of magic and mystery - finally decoded for the US readers!
Andri Magnason at his family farm in Northern Iceland. The painting is from one of the shipping agents who sold trips to the North America during the emigration period. It shows the Empress of Ireland which sank in the Gulf of St Lawrence in 1914 with a loss of more 1000 lives.
Andri Snær Magnason is chairman of Reykjavik, UNESCO City of literature. He has won the Icelandic literary award in all categories and his book LoveStar won the Philip K. Dick special citation in USA. He is born in Iceland but has a family in the US, his sister Hulda Magnadóttir is a brain surgeon in New Hampshire and his grandfather Björn Thorbjarnarson is a retired surgeon in New Jersey. He hit the world headlines when he operated on the Iranian Shah in 1979.