Memory of Water

Original title: Teemestarin kirja

Published: 2012

Publisher: Teos

Class/genre: Fantasy & S/F

Pages: 266

Memory of Water is a story of growing up, of the power of friendship – and, above all, of undying hope in a wrecked world.

Emmi Itäranta‘s debut novel Memory of Water (Teemestarin kirja) won the Teos Fantasy and Sci-fi Literary Contest in 2011 and earned her the Kalevi Jäntti Literary Prize for young authors, worth 16.000 euros, in December 2012. She also received the Young Aleksis Kivi Prize in 2013.

The story is set in a drought-ravaged, war-ridden future world where fresh water has become the privilege of a few and tea masters have been keepers of natural springs for centuries, Memory of Water tells the story of seventeen-year-old Noria, set to become the next tea master in her village. When her father dies, she finds herself alone with the dangerous responsibility of guarding a hidden spring that can save lives – or provoke people to kill.

As war spreads into her homeland, Noria’s loyalties are torn between keeping her duty and helping her dearest friend Sanja, whose family can barely survive on their water rations. Together the girls unearth knowledge about the past that has remained buried too long and begin to plan a journey to the Lost Lands, forbidden areas that might hold unexplored water resources.

Yet the web of the military is closing in on Noria’s secret. Sanja disappears mysteriously, and Noria is placed under house arrest. Knowing her own life is in danger, Noria must face a choice in order to secure the hidden information for others.


RIGHTS SOLD:

WORLD ENGLISH, HarperCollins (2-book deal)
ARABIC, Dar Al Muna
BRAZIL, Record (2-book-deal)
BULGARIA, Perseus
CZECH REPUBLIC, Albatros Media/Plus
DENMARK, Turbine
ESTONIA, Koolibri
FRANCE, Place des Editeurs (2-book deal)
GEORGIA, Palitra L Publishing
GERMANY, DTV/Reihe Hanser
HUNGARY, Metropolis Media (2-book deal)
ITALY, Piemme
JAPAN, Nishimura Shoten (2-book deal)
KOREA, The Book in My Life
LATVIA, Janis Roze
LITHUANIA, Nieko Rimto
NORWAY, Gresvik Forlag
RUSSIA, Text Publishers
SPAIN, Ediciones B.
SWEDEN, Modernista
TURKEY, Dogan Egmont
FILM RIGHTS, Bufo

Sad but told with a beauty that Emmi Itäranta communicates through language and Noria’s thoughtful story, where all flowing feelings are tamed in the peace of the ceremony. Afterwards, you are strangely cleansed, as if reading the book itself was a ceremony.” – Dagens Nyheter newspaper, Sweden

“Memory of Water is an emotionally nuanced moral study that draws its tensions from love, choices and the mark we all leave on the world. Both in terms of style and themes this book is reminiscent of the work of the American Ursula K. Le Guin.”
– Helsingin Sanomat newspaper, Finland

“Emmi Itäranta’s debut novel Memory of Water develops into a mysterious allegory of the dilemmas of truth, freedom and loyalty. Emmi’s dystopia is a skilful combination of science fiction and age-old utopian tradition that reflects the greatest social and environmental challenges of our time.”
– Kalevi Jäntti Literary Prize jury

Emmi Itäranta


Emmi Itäranta (b.1976) holds two MA degrees, one in Drama and another in Creative Writing. Her award-winning debut novel Memory of Water (Teemestarin kirja) was published in Finland in 2012 to great accolades, followed by The Weaver (Kudottujen Kujien Kaupunki) in 2015. Itäranta’s writing has been compared to that of Ursula K. Le Guin.

Her honours include the Young Aleksis Kivi Prize 2013, the Kalevi Jäntti Literary Prize 2012 and first place in the Teos Fantasy and Sci-Fi Literary Contest 2011.

Memory of Water has also been nominated for the Philip K. Dick Award, the Arthur C. Clarke Award recognizing the best science fiction novel published in the UK in 2014, and the Golden Tentacle award. In addition, Itäranta has been included on the Honor List of the James Tiptree, Jr. Award.

Rights to Memory of Water have been sold in 21 languages to date.

Itäranta’s cv is an eclectic mix of writing-related activities, including stints as a columnist, theatre critic, press officer and dramaturge. Her poems, short stories, articles and essays have appeared in anthologies, film magazines and science fiction magazines in the UK and Finland. She lives in Canterbury, in the United Kingdom.

Bibliography


Emmi Itäranta

The Weaver

2015, Fantasy & S/F

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