Book review: The Elephant Keepers' Children, By Peter Høeg

 

The Danish writer's previous novel, The Quiet Girl, was a metaphysical thriller about a clown with a keen sense of hearing. By contrast The Elephant Keepers' Children is a comic road trip.

The 14-year-old Peter and his sister are trying to track down two notorious criminals: their parents. The pastor and organist of the only church on the tiny island of Fino have been accused of fabricating cheap miracles.

Translator Martin Aitken colludes with the author's surreal jokes, though readers with a low tolerance of whimsy might still find Høeg's imaginings impenetrable.

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