I’m part of the group on Goodreads.com that really wanted to like the book more than I actually did and I do blame my own ignorance as an obstacle. I think maybe even a superficial knowledge of Sweden and its folklore would have been helpful to my enjoying Peter Bergting’s book more. Maybe it needed what they do with manga — an annotated list in the back of the book of significant symbols and cultural references.
The story is about a young girl named Jenne, who suddenly finds herself embroiled in a mystic(?)/supernatural(?) escapade that results from her grandmother’s death. Her grandmother some years ago stole something from a powerful sorcerer, who wants it back. Assisted by her talking cat, Bulka, and her “house spirit”, Uncle Ivan, Jenne goes to confront the sorcerer. Also, joining her are enemies-turned-allies the Poleviki. It’s the Poleviki that add the comic relief that helps move the story along.
The story is well paced though there are key moments like when the travelers meet a Rusulka that I thought were just too short (as if Bergting just got tired of writing or an enthusiastic editor chopped too much away to keep the book underneath a certain page count). The ending which I thought was clever also suffers from this lack of elucidation.