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4.06  ·  Rating details ·  3,093 ratings  ·  528 reviews
Enter the strange and wonderful world of Swedish sensation Karin Tidbeck with this feast of darkly fantastical stories. Whether through the falsified historical record of the uniquely weird Swedish creature known as the “Pyret” or the title story, “Jagannath,” about a biological ark in the far future, Tidbeck’s unique imagination will enthrall, amuse, and unsettle you. How ...more
Kindle Edition, 114 pages
Published September 22nd 2012 by Cheeky Frawg Books (first published September 1st 2011)
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Martha Well, no, but the word is related. If you read this Wikipedia article, you can see how:

Well, no, but the word is related. If you read this Wikipedia article, you can see how:


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Average rating 4.06  · 
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 ·  3,093 ratings  ·  528 reviews

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J.L.   Sutton
Jun 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
“I have to know… What is the nature of the world?" The djinneya smiled with both rows of teeth. "Which one?”

Book Review:

Describing Karin Tidbeck's short story collection, Jagannath as strange and quirky is in no way a sufficient description. These tales are also funny in a dark and unexpected way. Whether her characters are falling in love with machines ("Beatrice") or creating a companion out of menstrual blood, salt and vegetables ("Cloudberry Jam), these stories stick with you. Many of them, like "Rein
Where do they keep coming from? Over the last handful of weeks I’ve read Near + Far by Cat Rambo, At the Mouth of the River of Bees by Kij Johnson, and Errantry: Strange Stories by Elizabeth Hand—three new collections of short stories, all from small presses, all by female authors, and all superb. And then, just when I think it can’t get any better, along comes Karin Tidbeck’s debut collection Jagannath, which may just be the best one of the bunch. If you take into account that this is Tidbeck’s ...more
Althea Ann
Mar 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This volume is so short that it's barely a book (134 pages). Are these all of the short stories that Tidbeck's written? Why not put more in? This is not enough! I hope that her other writing is translated into English, because this is an excellent (if brief) collection.

I would highly recommend these stories for fans of Kelly Link and Theodora Goss. (As well as Ursula LeGuin, who blurbed it, and Elizabeth Hand, who wrote the introduction.)


Beatrice - "If you love someone, set them free."
Apr 10, 2018 rated it liked it
Short stories. Oh-oh.

I've become quite wary of short story collections. Wary of the promise of condensed stories and pacey plots that so often on arrival turns out to actually be a bunch of inconclusive narrative fragments that go nowhere.

So many of the collections I've read can be summed up with "yeah, there are a couple of good stories here" - hardly a ringing recommendation - and while I've read many good short works they're often surrounded by pages and pages of material I would rather not h
Jennifer Gaarder
Jan 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Please go to my blog for more reviews!

Jagannath By Karin Tidbeck

Vintage Reissue Edition, February 6,  2018

176 Pages, Paperback Edition

From Amazon:

"An award-winning debut story collection by Karin Tidbeck, author of Amatka and heir to Borges, Le Guin, and Lovecraft.

A child is born in a tin can. A switchboard operator finds himself in hell. Three corpulent women float somewhere beyond time. Welcome to the weird world of Karin Tidbeck, the visionary Swedish author of literar
Jun 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
So this is a collection I think I would class as bizarro fiction and that's a first for me. I picked this up after hearing a few of my friends liked it, and I am very glad that I did becuase Karin Tidbeck's stories have such a unique feel to them that I instantly knew I'd found a good collection.

The author of these stories is Swedish, but she writes in both Swedish and English and sometimes leaves Swedish words in the English stories so that the meaning is not lost in translation. All of her sto
Berit Ellingsen
Nov 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
Jagannath is a collection of 13 short stories of different lengths, all containing at least a hint of the imaginary, the unreal, and the weird, as allegories of alienation, otherness, and the taboo, but also as archetypal symbols in their own right.

The collection opens with Beatrice, a story about the many forms love can take, but how similar the pain is when that love goes unrequited. It’s also a story about birth and the love between parents and children.

In Tidbeck’s stories the process of bi
A really great collection of what I would call "mind-cleaner" stories. They're the sort of thing that you ought to read every so often to refresh your brain. Tidbeck incorporates a good deal of Swedish folklore in her work, and not being Swedish I found it all captivating.

The stories are also nice and short! Nice, short and odd.
I wish this book was three times the length so I could be absorbed in this strange, wintery, surreal Scandinavian-folklore-inspired world longer. I could read Karin Tidbeck's stories all day, every day.
People that should read this book
Do you like the movie Trick R Treat (and you should, you know)? Despite being thoroughly 'modern' when you are alone in the dark do you secretly believe in the thin veil that separates reality from otherness and netherness? Do you have recurring nightmares about be lost in dark pine woods and of floating fairy lights in the distance trying to lure you off the path? Do you wish you could find perfume or cologne in the scent of fall leaves, fresh rain, falling snow
Jul 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Jagannath is a collection of thirteen short stories by Swedish author, Karin Tidbeck. The stories are written in English, but have a distinct Nordic feel. Not very well known in the U.S., her writing style reminded me of Jonathan Carroll, whose genre might best be described as speculative fiction: a mixture of fantasy and folklore, with side orders of whimsy and weird. I'm not a big fan of short stories, but these ranged from 3-5 stars. Her afterword about the differences in writing between two ...more
Nov 02, 2015 rated it liked it
Intellectual enticements aplenty, but not emotionally satisfying. Perhaps it's a cultural disjunct, but few of the characters felt real, fully fledged to me. And, as is often the case in a certain strand of literary spec fic, stories end just when I feel they're getting started. Standout stories for me were "Reindeer Mountain," a story of two sisters from a long-line of "touched" mountain folk (which actually did hurt my heart), "Pyret," presented as an academic study of a mythological beast or ...more
Rachel (Kalanadi)
Mar 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Loved the atmsophere. The last 3 stories were almost too weird... but that's also what I loved about this. It was weird and different and I loved Tidbeck's style. If this is "Nordic spec fic", then I need to try more.
Every good review you read about this book is true - with the added bonus of an afterword with wonderful ruminations on language and writing in different languages (Tidbeck translated her own work from Swedish into English).
Jesús Cañadas
Dec 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Jagannath is a collection of thirteen short stories by Swedish author, Karin Tidbeck. The stories are written in English, but maintain a Nordic flavour. Not all the tales in this slim volume appealed. Though I found myself amused by the number of organic creatures populating the pages, I did get the sense I might have appreciated more of the stories if I had a more broad understanding of folklore. Jagannath has collected some outstanding reviews, however, and a couple of the stories easily illus ...more
Mar 09, 2018 rated it liked it
“Jagganath” and “Beatrice” are charming, imaginative stories of the Weird, and “Pyret” is a fascinating faux-essay on the Swedish supernatural.
Jessica Woodbury
Tidbeck got my attention last year with her unusual and fantastic novel AMATKA so I was happy to dive into this collection of her stories, which I believe was originally published first. Tidbeck has done the translation from Swedish herself (and has a lovely translator's note at the end) and slyly walks the line between adapting her stories for American audiences and maintaining their essential Nordic-ness.

If you enjoy speculative stories from the likes of Kelly Link that are weird, wild, and f
Megan W.
Nov 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Weird Tales ranging from fairies to sci-fi, all with a Nordic sensibility. I especially enjoyed the essay at the end, where the author discusses translating her own work, choosing words that express an idea better in one language than another, or that have no translation at all.
Nov 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kindle, 2012
In some places, time is a weak and occasional phenomenon. Unless someone claims time to pass, it might not, or does so only partly; events curl in on themselves to form spirals and circles.

(from "Aunts")

I purchased the Kindle version of Jagannath on a whim after learning that Elizabeth Hand had written the glowing introduction. And... wow. Thank goodness I did. Karin Tidbeck's speculative fiction from the border of fairyland enchanted me. It elicited tears and gasps and giggles and on occasion t
Dec 22, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5, rounded up.

Standard disclaimer: short stories are NOT my forte, and I don't tend to read a lot of them. And as in most collections, the quality of these stories varies wildly, but more of them, to me at least, seem successful here, than not. Strangely, the more bizarre and outré stories appealed to me less than the more subtle ones. And I haven't a clue what the Hindu deity Jagannath has to do with either the collection, nor the titular story. But for a quick and fun read, this will do.
Apr 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
Reading this book as a larp character who kills their time between work shifts was one of the most surreal reader experiences ever (and a very appropriate one, given Tidbeck's interest in Nordic larp). Some of the stories really spoke to me, some were just okay, but all made me appreciate Tidbeck's voice. Looking forward to reading Amatka soon.
Jul 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Well that was wonderfully weird. This was the perfect train book for me, every morning I was jostled out of my sleep and sucked into these immersive, incredibly creative stories. More please.
Sep 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So freaky and so, so good.
Carolyn F.
What a freaky book. Some of the stories were too short, more like ideas she had and didn't develop. I'm not sure if it's just me, because this book has such a high rating, but I didn't really enjoy it. 2.84 stars is the average.

1. Beatrice - Love with inanimate objects, but then they aren't really. ***

2. Some Letters of Ove Lindstrom - A girl who has been abandoned by her mother and then in spirit by her dad trying to make some sense of everything. ***

3. Miss Nyberg & I - Roommates and somethin
For most of this book I was hovering around maybe a 3.5 rating. The prose is lyrical, and the stories are brilliantly off-kilter, but for several I had that, "Well what exactly was the point here? Why exactly did it end there?" feeling that always leaves me dissatisfied. Also, a couple of them seriously CRUSHED MY SOUL, which, while admittedly a testament to the effectiveness of the story, is not a feeling I usually like to be left with, and so would negatively impact my personal rating.

But. But
Oct 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: literary-fiction
Sandwiched between two stellar short stories, half a dozen pieces pushes you over the edge and plants you in the no mans land between fantasy and reality. Tidbeck effortlessly transforms narration to imbibe fantastical elements which feels organic and fits perfectly.

It is hard to choose a favorite among a collection where every story offers something unique; be it in the structure of narration or the elements Tidbeck chooses to bend. And bend, she does. Across the collection theme remains const
M Griffin
Feb 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is the first English language collection by a wonderful Swedish writer of weird fantasy. The stories shift from mostly naturalistic realism with a hint of the strange, gradually becoming stranger and more fantastic, until by the end Tidbeck is exploring a truly bizarre world, at once whimsical and frightening. The best works of fiction stick in the mind well after the reader has moved onto other things, and Jagannath wedged itself in my brain as stubbornly as anything I’ve read in recent ye ...more
Nov 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites

I loved this book. Every story captivated me, and Tidbeck's use of language is amazing, particularly because this is a translation. Who is Arvid Pekon?, Some Letters for Ove Lindstrom, and Herr Cederberg are some of my favorites, but each story is truly unique, well-crafted, and deep. To list any more of my favorites would be to list the whole book (except Aunts. I didn't much care for Aunts). This is definitely a collection I will be revisiting in the future.
Feb 04, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An unexpectedly lovely and unsettling collection of short stories that occupy a liminal space between reality and folktales (with a few dips into more mainstream fantasy). For fans of Sofia Samatar, Margo Langergan, Amber Sparks, Laura van den Berg. Tidbeck did her own translations for those pieces originally published in Swedish and I honestly couldn’t tell the difference between those originally written in English and the translations.
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“Why did you make me?" you said.

"I made you so that I could love you," I said.”
“People who hurt others are the ones with the best imagination,” Rebecka said.” 4 likes
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