When I posted about Small Press Month, we talked about finding something different out there in the book stacks. If you’re trying to break out of the ordinary, here’s your escape: Pentti Saarikoski’s The Edge of Europe – A Kinetic Image. Saarikoski has been gone for sometime, but this unusual work of his has just been translated into English by Anselm Hollo and published by Action Books. It feels like a stream-of-consciousness journal, and perhaps that’s just what it was. Each two to three-page entry contains wild, free-flowing prose that make you feel like you’ve got a mind-reading machine set to Saarikoski’s number.

Originally published in Finnish in 1982, The Edge of Europe was written by this most famous of Finland’s poets. In fact, Saarikoski was so popular from the late 50’s to the early 70’s that he was often called “The Blond Beatle of the North.” He was a radical, often controversial figure who maintains a following to this day.

Interestingly, The Edge of Europe was written while Saarikoski was also working on his three volumes of poetry called Trilogy, his final poetic work. Both were written as he moved throughout Europe, staying in one place until he started to feel at home, then moving on. The Edge of Europe takes the reader through Norway, Brittany, Dublin, and Stavanger, an island off the west coast of Sweden. So if you’re trying to travel the world in your readings, this book will take you to some interesting corners.

I love to encourage people to step out of their usual reading patterns and reach for something different. I’m happy to tell you that this time, I have not one, but TWO copies of The Edge of Europe for a giveaway. So leave your comment here telling me what intrigues you about the book (something more than “sounds good” is kindly requested, just to keep things interesting). As always, subscribers to carp(e) libris reviews are automatically entered to win this and all giveaways here, so make sure to sign up. The winners will be randomly selected on April 1st, 2008, 12noon EST. I promise – no April Fool’s jokes! Just two lucky winners.

Check here for complete giveaway rules.


  1. Louise A Brouillete

    Count me in

  2. I have always dreamed of going to Europe. Since it hasn’t happened, I enjoy reading books about Europe.

  3. I’d love to read this

  4. I love to read and this sounds like a very cool read. I’m always looking for something new and different to read and this is definitely both of those!

  5. Having been to Europe quite a bit, it will be interesting to read another’s perspective.

  6. love to learn more about europe

  7. Count me in, I’m always looking for a new voice or a fresh perspective.

  8. I just had to quote what you said because it is exactly why I am interested in this book!
    “It feels like a stream-of-consciousness journal, and perhaps that’s just what it was. Each two to three-page entry contains wild, free-flowing prose that make you feel like you’ve got a mind-reading machine set to Saarikoski’s number.”
    This sounds amazing. Thanks so much for introducing me to this book. I was going to say something else but my mind literally just went blank with excitement.

  9. I love travel books, and my mom’s side of the family is Finnish so it would be interesting to read one by a Finn.

  10. I am interested in this perspective of Europe and am intrigued with Europe and the changes taking place. I enjoy reading about Europe and would enjoy this new outlook.

  11. I like the sound of the “stream of consciousness journal”. I don’t think I have ever read anything like that so why not give it a try?!

  12. adrienne gordon

    I travel to europe alot, this would be interesting to read

  13. Pingback: The Edge of Europe by Pentti Sarrikoski - 2 winners | Contests 4 Moms

  14. I love travel books

  15. interesting book

  16. I am always looking for interesting and out of the norm books. It doesn’t seem like anything i’ve read…might be a nice change of pace. Count me in for sure!

  17. Sounds great :)

  18. Shirley Younger

    Just the kind of book I love

  19. Happy Easter! I have not heard of the poet/author and he sounds like someone that I probably wouldn’t have looked at twice. Now, because of you, I would be interested in his book. It is good that it has been translated into English and we can now enjoy it! I love Europe and it would be delightful to see the places your mentioned because I have not been there before…..Please enter me in your drawing. Thanks,Cindi

  20. i’ve been a fan of Pentti Saarikoski for a while now

  21. I like stream of consciousness novels. This seems like an interesting one. Do consider me in for the giveaway!

  22. me too! (sorry…I know, I’m greedy 😉
    I am always interested in Europe, and life there, since I grew up in Spain. And I love small press books too!

    I’d love to get this one!

    thanks for another GREAT giveaway!

  23. Travel books take me to places that I shall never go otherwise. I would love to read this book as I too am a poet. :-)

  24. seems so interesting and different…would love to read and then pass along to my mom, an avid reader herself…also, great cover

  25. sounds like a great read I love to read

  26. sounds like a good read

  27. wow! this book is surely interesting. imagine travelling to various places in Europe and dreaming the things you want to see, hear, feel in these places. :)

    loving to snag a copy of this wonderful book!

  28. love sitting back and reading about places i’ve never been or ever will

  29. Christina Steele

    I lived in Germany for 3 years, and greatly miss the European experience. As an avid reader I love to find books such as this one!

  30. non-rhyming verse travelogues can be very good when done right

  31. Id Love to have a copy!!

    I added you on prizeatron too!

  32. I’m intrigued about the type of writing in this novel

  33. This looks great, I would love to be able to see into someone’s mind, or at least feel like I could.

  34. I have always thought it would be interesting to read a ‘stream-of-consciousness’ type writing..it is the type of writing I do myself. It sounds like this book,written in 1970’s – 80’s, may have resembled an early precursor of the twentyfirst century blog. What will also be interesting here will be the insight into the author’s thought processes as he worked on his final pieces of poetry.

  35. love it!

  36. I like the idea that Saarikoski stayed in one place until it felt like home. Thus, he was able to write from the depths of experience & the reader will taste of it as well. I’ve lived in Europe & the thought of “visiting” someplace new thrills the wanderlust in me! Thanks for hosting!

  37. It is a shame some of us in the U.S. don’t get to become familiar with writers like Saarikoski until after the fact. But, it is always nice to see similar writers get a resurgence recently. Gunter Grass and Flann O’Brien come to mind.

  38. Your description has me intrigued!

  39. going to Europe soon – would love this

  40. Have to read about Dublin!

  41. This sounds like a great book.

  42. Deborah Wellenstein

    Thank you for this giveaway!

  43. Having moved from Europe to Oregon 2 years ago I would love to read this book!! Anything to stay close to my European roots.

  44. I’d love to read something different, and I’ve always wanted to travel.

  45. Id love to read this! I’ve always been fascinated by Europe, but never been there…

  46. My father was born in Norway, so this book would interest me a great deal – since the Scandinavian countries is what the book is about!

  47. My husband and I are both artists with European ancestry. So a book like this would be a great addition to our home.
    [email protected]

  48. I was really into poetry when I was younger. Lately I have only been reading mystery books that are quick reads. Would love to get back into something that I liked in high school :)

  49. Pingback: carp(e) libris reviews » Blog Archive » Home Among the Swinging Stars by Jaime de Angulo - Review & Giveaway

  50. Thanks for the heads-up – I almost missed this one. I’ll post it tomorrow as well as your other giveaway.

    Oh, and thanks for entering my giveaway

    ~ aBookBlogger
    A Book Blogger’s Diary