We are thrilled to announce that the German rights for Hanna Meretoja‘s impressive debut novel THE NIGHT OF ANCIENT LIGHTS have been acquired in a pre-empt by German publisher mareverlag! The deal was closed by Anna Kappauf at Elina Ahlbäck Literary Agency.
mareverlag is one of the most important independent literary publishers in the German-speaking world and its publications focus on the sea – as a habitat, as an economic and cultural space, making it the perfect publisher for the setting of Hanna Meretoja’s novel. But it wasn’t just the setting that convinced the publisher of the book:
“We were fascinated by how clever and nuanced the author handled the topic of dealing with a potentially deadly disease. It is rare to find books that talk both so openly and with lots of sensitivity about this topic, but also about the other topics that are subjects of this novel (like birth trauma and involuntary childlessness). The beautiful setting, the skillful set-up of the characters’ relations and psychology, and the aptly chosen literary references make this novel a very enjoyable read, even though it talks about not so easy topics”.
– Judith Weber, Editorial Director at mareverlag
THE NIGHT OF ANCIENT LIGHTS is a very atmospheric, intimate novel that fits well in any upmarket and literary list and would also work great for bookclubs. If you would like to add this outstanding title to your list, don’t hesitate to contact us!
The Night of Ancient Lights
Close friends come together on the night of Ancient Lights to watch the chain of bonfires blaze across the archipelago and talk through their pasts and futures as the proximity of death ignites an intense passion for life.
Elea has just heard that she is seriously ill and wants to share with friends the sense of urgency that shakes her to her core. The push-and-pull of hope and despair permeates the narration that flows in the rhythm of the sea, in dialogue with Virginia Woolf’s Waves and Tove Jansson’s Summer Book. It captures the soul of the Finnish archipelago – the world’s largest island labyrinth.
Intellectual force is braided with subtle drama as personal emergency is woven into the fabric of global crises: the pandemic and climate change. Time is disrupted, but illuminated moments gleam in the dark. This intellectually fierce and passionate one-evening novel threads philosophical reflections into deeply intimate perceptions in a way that readers of Rachel Cusk and Maggie Nelson will recognize.
The novel has received glowing reviews – it has been praised for its lyrical language, wisdom and boldness, complex philosophical reflection on illness, precise narration, and passion for life, love and nature.
THE NIGHT OF ANCIENT LIGHTS
WSOY, 2022, 462 pp.
English sample and synopsis
FINLAND: WSOY (orig.)