Critics applaud Leena Lehtolainen’s latest work of upmarket women’s fiction

LehtolainennewsletterSept24A Life in Six Scenes (Kuusi kohtausta Sadusta, Tammi 2014), the new work of literary women’s fiction by bestselling crime author Leena Lehtolainen, has earned plenty of positive critical attention since its publication in August.

Is identity defined in love, in art, or on the public stage? A Life in Six Scenes tells the story of magnetic but divisive artist Satu Savinainen, whose lover Heikki Sirviö adapts her life into a play. Satu begins to get second thoughts about the collision between her private and public lives, and before the play’s premiere, she disappears. Lehtolainen’s novel incorporates the stage play into its narrative. For fans of authors such as Siri Hustvedt!

Praise for A Life in Six Scenes:

“[Character] Heikki Sirviö wrestles with his own motivations, as do all authors of memoirs and biographies. What will he leave out and what will he highlight in order to tell an interesting true story? The question remains: who has the copyright to one’s own life?”
Helsingin sanomat newspaper, Finland

“Lehtolainen’s expertise with technique reaches a masterful level in this examination of an artist’s personal boundaries.”
Aamulehti newspaper, Finland

“It’s wonderful to see that Lehtolainen has the courage to experiment and renew herself as a writer.”
Amman lukuhetki (“Amma’s Reading Moment”) literature blog, Finland

“Lehtolainen skilfully weaves together a novel and a play into a fascinating whole…She has broken boundaries successfully, and in her own way.”
Kulttuuri kukoistaa (“Culture Blooms“) literature blog, Finland

“Lehtolainen has delved into the world of theatre with commendable results.”
Kirsin kirjanurkka (“Kirsi’s Book Corner“) literature blog, Finland

This week Lehtolainen is meeting her French readers at the Festival Est-Ouest in Die, southerastern France. Next month she will attend the Frankfurt Book Fair (October 8th to 12th), where Finland is Guest of Honour in 2014 (see more information here). On November 11th, meanwhile, Lehtolainen will visit New York for the launch of the new Helsinki Noir anthology, published by Akashic Books.

About the author:

Leena Lehtolainen (b. 1964) is Finland’s bestselling female crime author, whose titles consistently top local bestseller lists. She has written more than 20 novels, and rights to her works have been sold in 29 territories. Sales have exceeded two million copies worldwide. In addition to her career as an author, which takes her to book festivals, exhibitions and other events around the globe, she has also worked as a literary researcher, columnist and critic. After two recent mystery series starring police officer Maria Kallio and bodyguard Hilja Ilveskero, both of which have found success around the world, Lehtolainen returns to literary fiction in A Life in Six Scenes.

The Maria Kallio series:
Original publisher:
BRAZIL, Autentica
GERMANY, Rowohlt
GREECE, Livani
JAPAN, Tokyo Sogensha
LATVIA, Zvaigzne
SPAIN, Destino
TAIWAN, Linking
TURKEY, Bizim Kitaplar
TV RIGHTS, Studio Hamburg

The Bodyguard Trilogy:
Original publisher:
ARMENIA, Guitank
FRANCE, Hachette Livre
GERMANY, Rowohlt
NETHERLANDS, Unieboek | Het Spectrum
RUSSIA, Azbooka-Atticus
SPAIN, Destino
TAIWAN, Linking
TURKEY, Nemesis

For information and reading materials contact:


Leena Lehtolainen

Leena Lehtolainen is the top female crime author in Finland: her new titles always head straight to #1 on the Finnish bestseller lists.

Leena’s brand new title The Ripple Effect was published in August 2020. It is already the 15th book of the very popular Maria Kallio series that has sold over 2,5 million copies worldwide!

* * *

The 1993 book Ensimmäinen murhani (My First Murder) kicked off Lehtolainen’s first and on-going crime novel series, which has brought an enthusiastically-received female perspective to the male-dominated detective genre through its distinctively down-to-earth heroine Maria Kallio. The Bodyguard Trilogy, meanwhile, stars a New York-trained bodyguard who is fiercely self-sufficient, highly alert to her surroundings, and haunted by horrific violence in her past.

Lehtolainen published her first novel at the age of 12; this work of juvenile fiction appeared in 1976. Leena Lehtolainen has also published outside the crime genre; her book The Charm of Figure Skating was voted sports book of the year 2010 in Finland and A Life in Six Scenes showed her return to literary fiction.

In her free time, Lehtolainen enjoys all kinds of music from 70’s punk to Schubert and Bach – just like Maria Kallio, the heroine of Lehtolainen’s crime novel series. And just as events in the Bodyguard (trilogy take the heroine Hilja Ilveskero all around Europe, Lehtolainen’s own work takes her to book festivals, exhibitions and other events across the globe.


Leena Lehtolainen

The Ripple Effect

2020, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen


2019, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Killer's Girlfriend

2018, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The End of Innocence

2017, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Charm of Ice

2016, General Nonfiction, Memories & Biographies

Leena Lehtolainen

The Eye of the tiger

2016, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

A Stroke of Sadness

2015, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Iron Triangle

2013, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Devil's Cubs

2012, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Lion of Justice

2011, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Where Have All the Young Girls Gone

2010, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Bodyguard

2009, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

On the Wrong Track

2008, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

The Nightingale Murder

2005, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Below the Surface

2003, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Before I Go

2000, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Fatal Headwind

1998, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Death Spiral

1997, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Snow Woman

1996, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Copper Heart

1995, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

Her Enemy

1994, Crime & Suspense

Leena Lehtolainen

My First Murder

1993, Crime & Suspense

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