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Moominland Midwinter

(Mumintrollen #6)

4.41  ·  Rating details ·  10,376 ratings  ·  607 reviews
This children's story is one of a series of books about the Moomins that blend magic, humour and adventure in the setting of the small, but ever-changing Moominvalley. ...more
Paperback, 168 pages
Published February 24th 1994 by A & C Black (first published 1957)
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Average rating 4.41  · 
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 ·  10,376 ratings  ·  607 reviews

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Apr 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens
This book has the best footnotes.

A displaced hedgehog is a hedgehog that has been removed from its home against its will and not even had time to pack its toothbrush.

And a bit later on, when we are so sad because squirrel is dead, the most comforting footnote I've ever read:

In case the reader feels like having a cry, please take a quick look at p. 126.
Spencer Orey
Feb 21, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My kid and I keep loving these books. Each one is a delight to read. This one, of darkness and snow and the northern lights and all the people of winter, was maybe the best one so far?
Dec 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
2020 is the 75th birthday of Moomintrolls!

I read these all out of order. I'm not sure how much difference it makes. This probably isn't the best place to start, as most of the Moomin family is hibernating through winter, so you don't meet them or Snufkin.

On the other hand, it has an amazing feel for winter landscape and nature.It was incredible that she was able to convey appreciation for a season so inimical to life. I wouldn't go to Finland in midwinter if you paid me. Unless it was a lot of
Eddie Watkins
The human world is a huge mess that somehow survives the day. I don’t know how it happens, and I’m not sure that all our (un)concerted efforts to help it survive don’t just further complicate things and make that daily survival less and less possible. My attitude in these matters is generally that of a cynical Taoist – a profound faith in things as they are functioning “perfectly” in enormous rhythms of time wedded to an understanding that most humans only make things worse. If pressed my explan ...more
Paul E. Morph
Jan 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
When Moomintroll awakes from hibernation early he discovers a sunless, snow-covered world he had never even dreamed existed and I get what is definitely my favourite Moomins book so far. Simply magical.

My next book: Giant-Size X-Men vol. 1
Dec 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oh, the things that happen to you if you can't hibernate properly!

Reread with my big kids in Scandinavian mid-winter. A delight to revisit after a decade!
Stephen Curran
Jun 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
'"When one's dead, then one's dead," said Too-Ticky kindly. "This squirrel will become earth all in his time. And still later on there'll grow trees from him, with new squirrels skipping about in them. Do you think that's so sad?"
"Perhaps not," said Moomintroll.'

Granted, I've only just finished reading it, but this might just be my favourite book. Towards the end, when Moomintroll's long and lonely ordeal is finally over, someone suggests that he should put a glass over a budding crocus to prot
Mira | I Read Like Phoebe Runs
All things are so very uncertain, and that's exactly what makes me feel reassured.

Had the urge to reread this because it kept popping up to my bookstagram feed, so thanks, guys. It was even better than I remembered, and a perfect December read. (Same in 2020!)
Paula Bardell-Hedley
“All was silent, nothing stirred, and slender stars were shining everywhere and twinkling in the ice. It was terribly cold.”
Moomins go into a state of deep hibernation from November to April, until the ice melts and spring sunshine warms their fur – it has always been so, or was, until a particular winter when something utterly perplexing happens to Moomintroll: he wakes from his state of torpor and cannot not get back to sleep. As his family slumber in their beds, oblivious to his predicame
Nate D
Sep 30, 2017 rated it liked it
Cynical comfort reading. Jansson's stories won't warm the depths of mid-winter, but may encourage you to accept that the frozen snowy dark is temporary and not entirely meritless if one remains open to its potential. People also. Most of them are irritating in some way or another, but it'll be okay. They're probably also well-meaning in some way. ...more
Dec 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My last book of 2020, a year that has felt like a long hibernation. A year when more than ever I needed to meet someone like Tove Jansson. Unfortunately I didn't get to meet her in person because A) she's dead, B) she lives on an island in Finland, C) I'm rather shy, D) lockdown. I did get to meet many of her wonderful characters, though. Thank you Tove for bringing some much needed poetry, solace and fun to my days. And thank you to all of you kindred spirits out there, wherever you may be, you ...more
¸¸.•*¨*•♫ Mrs. Buttercup •*¨*•♫♪

This was and always will be my favourite Moomin book. I read it the first time when I barely knew how to read, and since then I read it so many times that I know it by heart. It started my love for this series and it's one of the most important books I ever read for my growth as a reader. Love this <3
Jan 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2019
So wintry and lovely. My copy had 17 pages missing so I shall have to hunt them down and enjoy them on their own.
Girl with her Head in a Book
For my full review:

The first Moomins book that I read was Finn Family Moomintroll and I fell in love. Moominvalley seemed a magical place of eternal sunshine. The food was plentiful, the company enchanting and even when risky characters such as the Hobgoblin showed up, the threat never felt particularly severe. Eight year-old me was in rapture. But it was a library book and I was not allowed to keep checking it out indefinitely and nor was I allowed a cop
Emma Sea
There's a fab essay by Maria Popova on this book on Brain Pickings today, encompassing "the paradox of active surrender." Highly recommended.


Found my childhood copy of this while cleaning out an old box last night, and to my delight I enjoyed it just as much as a grown up. My favourite of all the moomin books, because of the haunting quietness. On my must-read list for all children.
Sep 13, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children-s
Someone bought me this book from a second-hand store when I was a kid. I can't remember who. I had never heard of the Moomin world before that, and for more than a decade no one else I knew ever indicated a knowledge of it. I saw a Little My button on a girl's backpack in High School and pointed it out and she went nuts with joy that someone had recognised it. Moominland was a secret world known by so few. Now the books are easier to find I IMPLORE you to buy them.

I swear this book changed me i
I love all the Moomin books, but this one especially. It's a small existentialist masterpiece. Who but Tove Jansson can blend menace and whimsy in such a winning way? I'm plotting an omnibus review of the whole series when I've finished rereading them all (two more books to go after this one). ...more
Beth Bonini
And so Moomintroll was helplessly thrown out in a strange and dangerous world and dropped up to his ears in the first snowdrift of his experience. It felt unpleasantly prickly to his velvet skin, but at the same time his snout caught a new smell. It was a more serious smell than any he had felt before, and slightly frightening. But it made him wide awake and greatly interested.

This is my first Moomintroll book - and appropriately enough, the book is about new experiences. Specifically, it is
Book #5 in #CramaThon2015.

I didn't DNF this the first time I tried reading it because I didn't like it, but more because I wasn't in the mood for it at the time. Glad I picked it up again during CramaThon, because I really enjoyed it!

(Finish a book you DNF'ed.)
Dec 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: orgasmic
I want some warm syrup now..
Apr 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jeg vet ingenting va Svensk. Men jeg vet en litt Norsk. Dette bok var vakker, morsom og rar. Det fremkalle vinterens magi.

It's cold here in England, very cold. There was a heavy frost in the garden this morning. The grass and shrubs looked as though they'd been moulded from coloured glass. I suppose that made it the perfect time to be re-reading this book.

It began a very long time ago with the Moomins and me. I read and re-read all of the books as a child. Then I read them in chronological order
In these uncertain and scary circumstances nothing feels as comforting as the Moomins. I haven't read any of the books since I was a child, and The Moominland Midwinter brought me back to simpler days. ...more
Nov 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids, lgbt, winter-reads
I’m just back from a fortnight’s writing residency in Sysmä, a small town in Finland, where I wild-swam in a lake, had nightly saunas, wrote 14,000 words on my novel-in-progress, and spent a few dreamy hours reading this book while a thunderstorm raged outside. And then I found out that Jansson wrote this book as a metaphor for her accepting her queer sexuality, and I loved it even more.
magdalena dyjas
Jan 01, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Oh, what a great book to start a new year with! Few months ago a colleague of mine had borrowed all my children books for her daughter to read. I'm soooooo glad I'd finally got them back (I must say I was getting anxious... 🙊) and I was able to start a new year with this little gem. It's not my favourite from the moomin series, but it's still an awesome book 😉 (4.5*) ...more
This is one of those books that you do not realize how great it is until you read it as an adult. It is a book about death, struggle, acceptance, and difference. At first Moomintroll is lonely but he learns about winter and learns to thrive.

And we should all be as fearless as Little My.
Marlous (agnesnutter_witch)
Absolutely lovely and with some lessons to learn from it too!
Matthew Hunter
"There are such a lot of things that have no place in summer and autumn and spring. Everything that’s a little shy and a little rum. Some kinds of night animals and people that don’t fit in with others and that nobody really believes in. They keep out of the way all the year. And then when everything’s quiet and white and the nights are long and most people are asleep — then they appear." — Too-Ticky, Moominland Midwinter

In Moominworld, misfits come out during the bleakest, coldest time of year
Dec 28, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Moominland Midwinter is more melancholic and thoughtful than earlier Moomin books. It is also one of my favourite Moomin books alongside with Moominvalley in November. It is Moomintroll's story of growing up; he wakes up in the winter when rest of the family is still hibernating and feels utterly lonely in the dark, cold world. Luckily there are creatures like Too-Ticky who keep him company and help him let go of his fears and loneliness. Tove Jansson is such an incredible writer. She both makes ...more
my absolute favorite of the Moomin books. This time I read it entirely in the summer house, which has emerged triumphant in winter in much the same way Too Ticky takes over the Bathing Hut in the book.

"here come the dumb
the lonely and the rum
the wild and the quiet
bang goes the drum"

Too Ticky is the character I would most like to be... I suppose Little My is my favorite, but I would rather actually model myself on Too Ticky. And I want a red winter hat that I can turn inside out when it's spring
Nov 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Upending the cosiness of the previous Moomin books, Moomintroll wakes up in the dead of winter, unlike any Moomin before him. The rest of his family continue to hibernate in their warm beds. Moomintroll grows lonely and hungry, and wanders out into the winter world, seeing snow for the first time. He's scared, depressed, and longing for summer and the world he understands. Everything he knows to be warm and safe and beautiful has changed. He meets Too-Ticky, an endlessly practical creature who h ...more
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Stora Läs Bok Vän...: December :: Trollvinter 26 10 Jan 06, 2013 07:37AM  

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Tove Jansson was born and died in Helsinki, Finland. As a Finnish citizen whose mother tongue was Swedish, she was part of the Swedish-speaking Finns minority. Thus, all her books were originally written in Swedish.

Although known first and foremost as an author, Tove Jansson considered her careers as author and painter to be of equal importance.

Tove Jansson wrote and illustrated her first Moomin

Other books in the series

Mumintrollen (1 - 10 of 20 books)
  • The Moomins and the Great Flood (The Moomins, #1)
  • Comet in Moominland (The Moomins, #2)
  • Finn Family Moomintroll (The Moomins, #3)
  • Moominpappa's Memoirs (The Moomins, #4)
  • Moominsummer Madness (The Moomins, #5)
  • Tales from Moominvalley (The Moomins, #7)
  • Moominpappa at Sea (The Moomins, #8)
  • Moominvalley in November (The Moomins, #9)
  • The Adventures of Moominpappa
  • Muumien suuria ja pieniä seikkailuja

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