Moominmamma and Moomintroll need to find a home for the winter, someplace where sun is plentiful and safe from the dangers of the unknown. But before they can settle down, they must cross a dark and sinister forest and find their way through a flood of epic proportions, all the while hoping that they will find Moominpappa again. Their journey seems daunting but they forge ahead, with Moominmamma’s kindness and patience giving Moomin the courage he needs to face the strange, unexplored path that lies ahead of them.
Written during the 1939-40 Finnish-Soviet Union conflict, or The Winter War, Jansson uses the unusual setting of a natural catastrophe to provide the background of her first children’s book and the first appearance of her beloved Moomin characters. She wrote this as her escape from the horrors of war and its many consequences, but rather than avoiding the problems that war raises, she uses these as a basis for the many obstacles that the characters face, from separated families to forced displacement. With beautiful black and white artwork interspersed throughout the text and curious, playful prose, you find yourself rooting for the Moomins and their quest to find Moominpappa and a place to call home.