Datura, or a Delusion We All See

Datura or a Delusion We All See From the PW starred review Shadows of Kafka and Strindberg are infused with Krohn s love of her fragile charactersAficionados of the surreal will find this a contemporary masterwork translated by Anna

  • Title: Datura, or a Delusion We All See
  • Author: Leena Krohn J. Robert Tupasela Anna Volmari
  • ISBN: 9780985790462
  • Page: 399
  • Format: Paperback
  • From the PW starred review Shadows of Kafka and Strindberg are infused with Krohn s love of her fragile charactersAficionados of the surreal will find this a contemporary masterwork translated by Anna Volmari and Juha Tupasela Our narrator works as an editor and writer for a magazine specializing in bringing oddities to light, a job that sends her exploring throFrom the PW starred review Shadows of Kafka and Strindberg are infused with Krohn s love of her fragile charactersAficionados of the surreal will find this a contemporary masterwork translated by Anna Volmari and Juha Tupasela Our narrator works as an editor and writer for a magazine specializing in bringing oddities to light, a job that sends her exploring through a city that becomes by degrees ever less familiar From a sunrise of automated cars working in silent precision to a possible vampire, she discovers that reality may not be as logical as you think and that people are both odder and ordinary as they might seem Especially if you re eating datura seeds Especially when the legendary Voynich Manuscript is involved Where will it all end Pushed by the mysterious owner of the magazine, our narrator may wind up somewhere very strange indeed Datura is luminous at once a secret history of losers, dreamers, and quacks, and a lyrical argument on the nature of reality I thoroughly enjoyed it Sofia Samatar, A Stranger in Olondria

    One thought on “Datura, or a Delusion We All See”

    1. “In the dark recesses of my chest, alveoli perish one by one. How many are there? How many do I need to be able to live and breathe? How little I know of the ceaseless workings of my insides—a space where thrombocytes float to the beat of my still-hot heart.”- Leena Krohn, Datura (Or a Delusion We All See)I picked up this book because of the Tori Amos song (youtube/watch?v=WX_dw) and for not the first time I’m really pleased with one of my impulse reads. I can definitely say I was hooked [...]

    2. This is what I think I've learned: reality is nothing more than a working hypothesis. It is an agreement that we don't realize we've made. It's a delusion we all see. Yet it's a shared, necessary illusion, the end product of our intelligence, imagination, and senses, the basis of our health and ability to function, our truth.Hold on to it. It's all--or nearly all--that you have. Try to set outside of it and your life will change irreversibly, assuming you survive at all.The truth is always share [...]

    3. (Read as part of the Book Riot Readharder challenge 2018. Category: A single-sitting book.)An anonymous woman in an anonymous (though clearly Nordic) city receives a flower for her birthday. She begins dosing herself with its seeds, to help her asthma. At the same time, she takes a job working for The New Anomalist, a magazine devoted to the uncanny and paranormal, whose publisher is always looking for a fresh (and profitable) angle. Datura is told as a series of vignettes - disordered notes, ac [...]

    4. A delicate and strangely earnest exploration of the uncanny that fans of Murakami are likely to love. A synopsis runs the risk of making Krohn's slim novel look like a weird-for-weird's-sake heap, but it's anything but: the narrator is naive by her own admission, which gives a matter-of-fact clarity to the gallery of quacks and weirdos she's forced to give time of day to.

    5. I can't remember what I thought of Leena Krohn's Tainaron when I read the English translation eight or nine years ago, before writing reviews seemed worthwhile, so there's only an ambiguous three-star rating and the memory of insects to guide me. Would I like it more now? It seems possible, perhaps even likely. Because Datura, petal-thin but heady, enchanted me.Originally published in 2001 but only recently available in English, this short novel explores anomalies, addiction, hallucinations. It' [...]

    6. Leena Krohn is considered one of Finnland's finest living writers. Having read Datura (Or a Delusion We All See) (Finnish, 2001; English translation 2013 by Anna Volmari and J. Robert Tupasela), I am convinced that: 1. Such statements are not hyperbole, and 2. If Krohn is representative of Finnish character, then the Finns are an interesting people.Datura presents itself as the straightforward story of two years in the life of our unnamed narrator, the editor of a paranormal magazine, The New An [...]

    7. Datura by Leena Krohn is a wonderfully weird collection of inter-connected short stories. Our unnamed narrator works as an editor for a paranormal magazine ‘The New Anomalist’. Tasked by her overbearing and eccentric boss ‘the Marquis’, a man who is obsessed with money but dislikes the very business he owns and operates, our narrator struggles to edit together various stories, interviews, news flash-bulletins, advice columns, and photographic essays, etc. The failing magazine is a hodge- [...]

    8. Ensimmäinen kirja, jonka luin Leena Krohnilta. Pidin hirvittävästi! Kieli on puhdasta ja nautinnollista. Daturan aihe on kiinnostava ja Uuden Anomalistin toimistossa vierailevat heput herkullisia. Suosittelen kaikille, jotka pitävät sellaisesta lukemisesta, joka herättelee ajattelemaan olematta raskas.

    9. She is a new favorite author of mine. Trippy, with a completely unreliable narrator in circumstances that make her grip on reality even more tenuous. Fantastical and fantastic. I'm already reading another book of hers!

    10. Mielenkiintoinen Daturan tokkurainen matka. Viihdyttäviä ajatuksia pinnalla ja syvemmällä mutta jotenkin tästä jäi silti tunkkainen olo.

    11. Něco málo od Leeny Krohn jsem už přečetla, takže struktura knihy mě nepřekvapila: sled krátkých epizod, které by se snad daly nazvat povídkami, ale nemají příliš výraznou pointu; nejsou to ani kapitoly románu, protože na sebe většinou příliš nenavazují, ale přitom se postupně skládají do určitého obrazu o jednom svérázném období z života bezejmenné hlavní hrdinky.Vypravěčka pracuje jako redaktorka v časopise Nový anomalista, který se zabývá předevš [...]

    12. Luin tämän kirjan ja pidin värikkäästä, rikkaasta kielestä ja selkeistä mielikuvista, jota se toi. Kirjan henkilöhahmot piirtyivät elävinä ja selkeinä mieleeni luoden yhtä mielenkiintoisen kudelman kuin itse olisin maistanut tuon pelottavan kasvin siemeniä. Suosittelen lämpimästi.I read this book and loved it a lot. I enjoyed it's rich and colourful language, clear images it created. Characters in this book came to my mind as clear as the mirror and the story made me feel intere [...]

    13. Narrated anonymously by the erstwhile editor of The New Anomalist magazine, this paints a picture of a world populated by strange and intriguing people. told in short chapters, often only a couple of pages long, each dealing with a different character as the narrator who is a rationalist encounters subjects for the magazine. Although all is not necessarily what it seems. The narrator starts to take the seeds of the datura plant, which are possibly hallucinogenic and even toxic. Her view of the w [...]

    14. This is an odd book. I sort of completely love it but also don't care that I've read it and probably won't think about it again, which is very strange since I actually highlighted a lot of passages.It's a very strange effect, because it's pretty brilliant and about things that interest me, but most of the book is pretty scattered. Each chapter is really short and they all deal with sort of separate little mysterious incidents. These incidents are interesting in their own right, but they don't bu [...]

    15. What a delightful slow burn of a novel. It's brief (~200 pages) and told in blinks of connected stories (~2-3 pages each). It's a quiet story of slipping outside consensus reality, with each story chipping away at our narrator's mental state. The cover name-checks Kafka (maybe I should read more Kafka), but I noticed more The Third Policeman's bizarre yet satisfying alternate-world rules, Little, Big's encouraging smile, a lower-key deprogramming ala Grant Morrison's The Invisibles, or even the [...]

    16. An excellent short novel, one of the Leena Krohn Collected Fiction I found in a Storybundle put together by Jeff and Ann Vandermeer. I went to Datura first because the subject matter is most in line with my tastes, and I have to say, I'm usually iffy when my only introduction to a new author is praise of the level Vandermeer gave of Krohn. It's one of my things; I have an aversion to high praise, and my mind puts up walls, not wanting my opinion to be colored going in.But Krohn earns it, with ev [...]

    17. What still sticks with me a month after reading:1. The Master of Sound and his Sound Silencer? That might not have been its name. His cardboard device for creating complete silence2. The woman the narrator sees from the top deck of the bus, dressed in red, lying on a table or trolley beyond the window of a nearby building3. The old woman the narrator follows, which leads to her becoming temporarily unstuck in time4. The office of the NEW ANOMALIST, with the singing fish on the bookshelf and the [...]

    18. 4 1/2 stars. A novella that consists of dozens of semi - related 2-5 page long stories that chronicles the mental breakdown of a woman who, for obscure reasons, gets herself addicted to the delightfully poisonous seeds of the datura flower. Most of the passages are about the people she interviews while writing for a magazine about the strange and occult (a vampire, a woman who has seen Jesus in a piece of cheese, a man who preaches the benefits of drilling holes in one's skull, etc.). Krohn's pr [...]

    19. Comparable to Krohn's Tainaron: short vignette chapters without an obvious overarching plot.Where Tainaron focusses on homesickness and feeling out of place in a foreign place, Datura lets ut look at the world through the eyes of somebody slowly breaking down mentally.It's grounded in the real world, but as the main character is an editor at a magazine publishing Ffordian stories (a few of the chapters touch on the Voynich manuscript, a very weird, but very real book, look it up if you haven't h [...]

    20. First, an admission; It took nearly an entire year to read this book, but not because of its heady, reflective take on the nature of reality. Life just got in the way and reading was momentarily put on the back burner (yes, heresy I know!).Succintly put, I recommend this book for its refreshing take on the nature of the shared hallucination we refer to as "reality". Krohn's tale, told through the senses of a naive, asthmatic journalist for a magazine dedicated to essays on the paranormal unfolds [...]

    21. This is a beautifully written novel about a woman who is exposed to all different types of paranormal ideas & experiences through her work. She is given a datura plant as a gift & soon finds out that the seeds, as well as being a poison, can also have medicinal benefit for asthma which she suffers from. She begins to take the seeds but also finds that they have an unexpected effect on her senses. She has many experiences, some being more or less multidimensional in nature. I love this au [...]

    22. Enjoyable for the quirky characters and the strangeness bleeding the edges of reality and dreams/hallucinations. But it is a bit hard to feel sympathy for the main character who poisons herself over the long term for no real reason or gain; it is a good argument against blind acceptance of alternative medicine. Also, there was not enough Voynich Manuscript. It was referred to, but the story never really delved into it.

    23. This novella is more a series of short stories with a central character adding a conversation element for the new characters in each story. There is a small underlying plot throughout the book and each time a plot element sneaked it, I got interested in the story again. But these plot elements were few and far between and weren't enough to make the book mostly boring. There were a few good reoccurring characters and a few good passages, especially the one about the singing fish.

    24. Ensimmäinen kirja, jonka luin Leena Krohnilta. Pidin hirvittävästi! Kieli on puhdasta ja nautinnollista. Daturan aihe on kiinnostava ja Uuden Anomalistin toimistossa vierailevat heput herkullisia. Suosittelen kaikille, jotka pitävät sellaisesta lukemisesta, joka herättelee ajattelemaan olematta raskas.

    25. Fantastic. Krohn has a slow and dream-like way of pulling you slowly into her slightly-off-kilter world, where things are very odd but somehow don't seem completely impossible. Reading her books makes me want to be somewhere quiet, writing letters about the unusual things that happen around me. Hers are books I can go back to again and again.

    26. The story is pretty straight-forward - a woman begins taking a "natural remedy" for asthma that is actually a poison. She gets sick - and uninteresting, but while that's happening the protagonist is working for a magazine about the supernatural, aliens, conspiracies, etc. and the weird people she meets as part of that job are interesting enough to hold your attention.

    27. A strange little exploration of the space between reality and illusion. The narrative follows a journalist for a fringe magazine, presenting a series of fantastical vignettes that explore one self delusion after another while the protagonist herself losses her grip on shared reality."My memory, the anchor that bound me to shared perceptions, had come loose. I was adrift."

    28. “In the dark recesses of my chest, alveoli perish one by one. How many are there? How many do I need to be able to live and breathe? How little I know of the ceaseless workings of my insides—a space where thrombocytes float to the beat of my still-hot heart.”- Leena Krohn, Datura (Or a Delusion We All See)

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