The Year of the Hare
by Arto Paasilinna and Pico Iyer


Overview - Suddenly realizing what's important in life (with the help of a bunny), a man quits his job and heads to the countryside in this internationally bestselling comic novel.

"Which of us has not had that wonderfully seditious idea: to play hooky for a while from life as we know it?" With these words from his foreword, Pico Iyer puts his finger on the exhilaratingly anarchic appeal of The Year of the Hare Read more...


 
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More About The Year of the Hare by Arto Paasilinna; Pico Iyer
 
 
 
Overview
Suddenly realizing what's important in life (with the help of a bunny), a man quits his job and heads to the countryside in this internationally bestselling comic novel.

"Which of us has not had that wonderfully seditious idea: to play hooky for a while from life as we know it?" With these words from his foreword, Pico Iyer puts his finger on the exhilaratingly anarchic appeal of The Year of the Hare.

While out on assignment, a journalist hits a hare with his car. This small incident becomes life-changing: he decides to quit his job, leave his wife, sell his possessions, and spend a year wandering the wilds of Finland-with the bunny as his boon companion.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780143117926
  • ISBN-10: 0143117920
  • Publisher: Penguin Books
  • Publish Date: December 2010
  • Page Count: 208
  • Reading Level: Ages 18-UP
  • Dimensions: 7.6 x 5 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.35 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Literary
Books > Fiction > Humorous - General
Books > Fiction > Psychological

 
BookPage Reviews

Choosing a path based on desire

It takes little to motivate middle-aged journalist Kaarlo Vatanen to turn in his notepad for a new adventure. When he and a photographer hit a hare while driving on assignment, Vatanen alone follows the injured animal into the woods. This act changes the course of the Finn’s next 364 days and beyond, documented in Arto Paasilinna’s international bestseller The Year of the Hare, as he abruptly decides to leave his job, wife and home for whatever awaits him with his new, wild, recovering companion.

The comic novel moves across Finland and into Soviet territory as Vatanen and the hare take a series of odd jobs and slay a bear in the quest for—what? It’s never quite clear to us or to him, and that’s the joy of it. In lieu of a map, Vatanen chooses his path based on desire. He reflects at one point, while performing heavy labor on a forestry job in Kuhmo and living in a tent, that anyone could live this freely if only they had the good judgment to give up the way they’re currently residing. He calls his prior life “flabby,” in contrast to the unfussiness of the fresh air and quiet company he has chosen to keep after meeting the hare.

Paasilinna’s story is somehow plausible, despite the Lucy-and-Ethel situations the lead characters get themselves into, and it feels as though we, too, could so easily desert our responsibilities to others to follow what fulfills us. The glory of the outdoors is celebrated here, through each season, and we can nearly smell the early clover and meadow vetchling of the hare’s diet. Vatanen is who we want to be—minus the forest firefighting. And cow herding. And discovery of a dead granddad in a barn.

No, scratch that—Vatanen is who we yearn to be brave enough to become, as soon as we stop waiting for the timing to be right.

 
BAM Customer Reviews