A book which delivers on its predecessor’s promise is Antti Tuomainen’s The Moose Paradox, the sequel to his fun The Rabbit Factor, from last year. So we are once again in Finland, in the company of insurance mathematician (think actuary) Henri Koskinen, as he tries to get on top of running YouMeFun, the adventure park he inherited in the previous book.
Henri is a great central character to spend time with – a simple everyman type who loves everything to be orderly and structured and is, unfortunately, faced with chaos and mayhem every day. You can see why the rights for the series have been picked up by Steve Carrell and Amazon Studios. Carrell would make a perfect Henri – bamboozled and blank-faced at everything that is thrown at him.
In The Moose Paradox, there are more gangsters with secrets and grudges from the past, trouble with the Moose Chute that Henri wants to buy from Toys of Finland Ltd, and some faltering romance with local artist Laura. This is all handled with a gleeful humour, but also a huge amount of empathy for Tuomainen’s central character. The comedy here is more overt, with plenty of slapstick and zany antics, but it’s Henri’s bemused attitude to it as he navigates all the weirdness that makes it a delight from start to finish.
A second book in a series that builds on the strengths of what came before.
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