Swedish Portraits



Publisher:Penfield Books

Authors:Judit Martin, Joan Liffring-Zug Bourret

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Swedish Portraits Description

Judit Martin, originally from the American Midwest, has been living in rural Sweden since 1969. She has published several short stories in Scottish literary magazines, two books in Swedish, and one novel in English. These five short stories are historical fiction inspired by the lives of people Martin has known or known about. They depict life from a different era and the hardships that people of that time dealt with in day to day life. The stories take place in the nineteenth or early twentieth century. Samuel tells the story of a tailor’s son who marries a woman considered by her peers to be a “whore” due to her illegitimate daughter. Alulf tells of a Swedish immigrant living in America who creates a fictional and successful life for himself through photographs he takes. Hilda describes the life of a seven-year-old girl sent to be a maid for her elderly aunt and uncle. The struggles that a woman must face when her father dies and thus leaves the control of his estate in the hands of a cruel squire are shown in Elin and Teo, and Tora describes the hardships that a young country girl endures when she is sent to town for boarding school. Judit Martin’s stories show the primitive and sometimes inhumane conditions that the poor endured, simply because it was the way life had always been. The collection is beautifully written and eye-opening, and a very worthy read. For Mature Audiences

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