Malört, one of Sweden's most exciting small presses and certainly the best dressed, has a new book out. Varulven (The Werewolf) is a reprint of a classic from 1943, a study of werewolves in Swedish folk traditions by pioneering anthropologist Ella Olstedt.
And damn if it doesn’t seem like an absolutely essential addition to the library here at Bassington Manor. For not only is lycanthropy an extremely interesting subject in itself, wolves are canines (though less evolved than the noble Basset hound) – which of course makes the book even more relevant.
Another factor that makes this publication a near compulsory purchase for any Swedish-reading person with a taste for the weird is the fact that Malört, being a small press, is going through a rough patch. So helping them by purchasing the book is probably a religious obligation for any decent individual out there.
The book isn't just a stand-alone thing, either. It comes accompanied by a CD with music inspired by the lycanthropic, created by an assortment of great neofolk and folk artists, from Birch Book to Hedningarna. This record, of course, has the added advantage of being enjoyable for people who can't read Swedish.
As we've come to expect from Malört, the book is produced to the highest standard. Indeed, bibliophiles of a sensitive nature might perhaps want to stay away from Malört. For Dog only knows that Lord Bassington-Bassington feels faint from merely glimpsing the paw print on the front cover.
And the interior is just as dizziness-inducing. Oh, the caninity!
Lord Bassington-Bassington hasn't had time to sink his teeth into the book yet, but is quite optimistic. For a small hint about the quality of the contents can be gleaned from the picture of Ms. Olstedt below. Admit it: With a writer this stylish, you just know the book has to be great, don't you?
So now, as the evenings grow shorter and nights grow darker up here in the North, Lord Bassington-Bassington is looking forward to a bit of hibernation on the sofa, curled up with some properly canine reading material. Perhaps His Lordship will turn into a Were-Basset? Anyway, with our deeply psychic powers we can foresee that Lord Bassington-Bassington will be recreating some classic movie dialogue.
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