Monique Roffey and Kaisa Ling

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Venue: Estonian Writers’ Union (see on map)
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  • Conversation with writer
Original language: English
Translated to: Estonian
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Monique Roffey

© Marcus Bastel

Monique Roffey (1965) is a Trinidadian-born British writer. Roffey’s heritage is strongly present in her works – both in terms of locations as well as a more general atmosphere reminiscent of magical realism. True, her debut novel Sun Dog, published in 2002, is set in a suburb of London. Yet it still bears a magical touch, as the protagonist, a man named August who works at a deli, discovers that frost appears on his arm and seems to mimic the weather outside. With the backdrop of magical events, Roffey’s novels deal with acute social topics; for example, the 2012 maritime adventure Archipelago takes its subject from the impact of climate change on the Caribbean. Estonian readers can enjoy her latest novel The Mermaid of Black Conch (2020) about the love story between a fisherman named David and a mystical mermaid named Aycayia who was captured by American tourists and bears an ancient curse. While the events centre on a fairy tale mermaid, it allows Roffey to explore different topics at once, such as passion, women’s emancipation, colonial heritage and the environment, which is increasingly difficult to control.

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