Irrational Things

Autofictive story of love, death and life between two countries. Turunen’s funny, witty and melancholic voice examines the contradiction of sense and sensibility.

What if you are in love with a good man – a man you have always wanted to fall in love with? But what if this man lives in one country and you in another? Should you be sensible and leave the man to be free and independent? Or should you follow your heart, burn the bridges behind, and go after him?

The narrator travels to Barcelona to study theatre. After a few weeks she falls in love with a local man. Thus begins an intensive relationship that tears her between two countries and two cultures. She learns that relationships are between two individuals who have their own ways of expressing love to others and to themselves.

Turunen’s novel paints a relatable picture of relationships, breakups and the constant battle between fear and love. It is a beautiful picture of a woman growing up and trying to balance between social expectations, commitment and freedom.

The Others of Us

Do we really make our own choices, or are we just part of someone else’s story?

To escape the demands and responsibilities, Tino fetches a jar from the closet, digs out a pill, sets it on the back of his tongue, and accelerates the medicine’s journey to his stomach with some coffee.  He sinks into images of lives that are experienced elsewhere, at different times, through the eyes of other people. He suddenly finds himself writing only stories – and not just stories of the world outside, but he is also writing his own life into a story which events he is no longer able to control.

The Others of Us takes the reader to the road with Jack Kerouac, to a bar with Charles Bukowski, and to have discussions with Edgar Allan Poe and Jane Austen. A lot of people have things to say, but who are actually worth listening?

 


Rights sold:

FINLAND: Tammi (orig.)
GERMANY: Weidle

The Most Beautiful Word

Warm, humorous and beautiful debut novel from the point of view of a stepmother. Patchwork family life, and new beginnings.

  • Debut novel by acclaimed screenwriter and actress
  • Feature film in development by Aurora Studios

Amanda’s life is revolutionized when Onni curves into her life with a yellow minibus, chaos and four children riding along. She has been living an extended youth and cared mainly for her house plants until she met Onni and his kids. Happiness, the laundry pile and the dish mountains grow in their new home. Everything is always lost and the house is permanently messy, but Amanda firmly believes that love conquers all obstacles. But when Onni’s behavior starts to get weirder, she has to decide if love truly fixes everything.


Rights sold:

FINLAND: Otava (orig.)
ESTONIA: Eesti Raamat

FILM: Aurora Studios

Charlotta

Beginning of a new series about the Grand Duchy of Finland in the spirit of Jane Austen.

Strict class hierarchy and fabulous silk ruffles rule in 19th-century Turku, where seamstress Charlotta is looking for her own Mr. Darcy.
When baron Ridderlöw of Starfire Manor hires seamstress Charlotta Silke as a lady’s maid for her sister, their lives change for good.

Charlotta gets her hands on Jane Austen’s newly published Pride and Prejudice and it alters the way she sees her role as a woman. But the book’s ideas of modern love, marriage and early feminism are put to the test as the bitter war-torn baron Ridderlöw becomes romantically interested in Charlotta. Can an ordinary lady’s maid have it all: a meaningful life and the man of her dreams?

Hope Never Dies

A hilariously horrible story straight out of the school world. Finland has the best schools in the world – or does it?

Marja Vehmarvarsi is a 62-year-old teacher, on the verge of retirement. The schools in Finland have been privatized at a brisk pace, and in order to get any work hours Marja has to come up with new learning games for phenomenon-based learning curriculum, and organize weekly meetings for cross-subject synergies.

Marja’s parents Aina and Toivo are almost 100 years old, but nevertheless passionate YouTubers, whose goal is to save the Finnish school system – whatever it takes. Marja’s popularity among the students grows as her parents’ radical plans spread over the internet.

High-Rise

Trainspotting meets City of Gods in a suburban apartment building. Critical success and Finlandia Prize nominee in 2019.

When the high-rise was new it was the pride of the city, an example of modern living, a beacon of a brighter future. But today you won’t find happy homes, stylish decorations or successful people in this building. It has become the residence for those who struggle. In this concrete jungle, everything is connected and lives are fragmented, memories shattered by violence and substances.


Rights sold:

FINLAND: Like (orig.)

The Blackbird

A heart-gripping story of loss, letting go, and of hope that won’t fade away – based on a true story.

In August 1989 a young man goes on a cruise boat with his friends, and disappears.  The only thing that returns is a yellow backpack and endless sorrow. The tragedy changes the lives of the whole family. Uncertainty of the brother’s fate makes his little sister ask even years later, what happened on that night on M/S Fennia?

The sister, grown up with the trauma, returns to the memories of past with hope to finally be able to say goodbye.

 


Rights sold:

FINLAND: WSOY (orig.)
ARABIC: Sefsafa Publishing

Facelift

Tragicomic tale of life’s biggest questions and their surprisingly simple answers.

#humour #problems #wellbeing #socialmedia #fake #facelift

Sami has a dream: he desperately wants to be a father. His biological clock has been ticking for the past 15 years so loudly that sometimes it’s hard to hear his own thoughts. But it’s not so easy to become a father, first of all, you need to find a suitable future mother candidate.

But when Sami’s latest future-mother-candidate rides off with a biker guy, he makes a series of bad choices that cause him to anger the local motorcycle gang. How to fix a life where everything seems to go wrong? Sini, a wellbeing blogger with perfectly instagrammable life arrives to offer a solution.


Rights sold:

FINLAND: Otava (orig.)
ESTONIA: Eesti Raamat
GERMANY: Kein & Aber

Rage

Story of divorce, alcoholism, and attempts to recover. Faith, hope, love… and rage! EU Literature Prize nominee!

#marriage #divorce #alcoholism #familydrama #love #attraction #translation #competing #recovery

Tuuli is a struggling translator and a mother of Luna, a four-year-old girl. When Tuuli leaves her heavily drinking husband Ilja, the lives of three people change for good.

Rage is a gripping story of divorce, alcoholism, and attempts to recover. It’s also a novel about motherhood, commitment, relationships, and how people and literature are both just as tricky to translate. Three narrators paint a picture of one broken family, and one fragile lizard who seems to keep everything together.


Rights sold:

FINLAND: Otava (orig.)
BULGARIA: Perseus

The Reindeer Mafia

Reindeer Mafia tells the story of the reindeer-rich Nelihanka family that rules the fell county of Utsjoki through property grabs and blackmail. The eldest son Jyppyrä who runs the Wolverine SC snowmobile club becomes the challenger of this cosa nostra of the far north. At stake in the clash between the two criminal factions is not only the control of the village but the future of traditional Sami lifestyle.


Rights sold:

FINLAND: Johnny Kniga (orig.)
CZECH REPUBLIC: Argo
GERMANY: Antium Verlag

A Far, Far Love

A story of longing, love, and loss. For the fans of The Red Address Book – with a humoristic twist.

Kauko Koskinen is a man of order: receipts are organized, 60 years of calendars are safely stored, and every day has certain rhythms and routines. But when he gets banned from the dementia care home where his wife resides, his life turns upside down. Memories of his youth bring a person from the past back to his mind: where is his first love now? Kauko starts to track down a woman he knew sixty years ago, but is he chasing only a memory or a dream?

From internationally bestselling author of the Sunset Grove trilogy and The Angry Widow.

 

Red Storm

As a small boy grows up in Iraq ruled by Saddam Hussein, fear is always present. His father is part of an underground opposition movement that tries to overthrow the dictator. The father ends up spending years in prison, and the boy learns that just one wrong word can put his life in danger.
The family escapes to melancholy Finland, a country recovering from financial depression. It is a safe country, but the boy grows up with mixed feelings: can one be a good Muslim and a good Finnish boy? When ISIS in rising in Iraq, the boy returns to his home country as a peace negotiator, hoping to build a county where his children can travel safely to one day.

My Friend Natalia

The long-awaited new novel by Finlandia-prize winner! A bold, and brave novel about young woman’s sexuality, the power of narration, and identity.

Natalia starts to see a therapist to help solve the problems in her sex life. It is clear from the beginning that she is not going to play by the rules of the therapy. The weekly sessions combine art, philosophy, literature, childhood memories, and erotic experiences as a method of treatment, and slowly they make Natalia lose all her inhibitions. She starts to enjoy the therapy – maybe too much?

The novel takes a deconstructive approach to the self-help narratives of our time and drives the tools of autofiction into a dead end, asking what is concealed, when everything is revealed.

 


Rights sold:

FINLAND: Teos (orig.)
BELGIUM: De Bezige Bij
ESTONIA: Rahva Raamat
FRANCE: Gallimard
GERMANY: dtv
HUNGARY: Scolar Kiado
ITALY: Elliot Edizioni
LITHUANIA: BALTO
NETHERLANDS: De Bezige Bij
NORWAY: Oktober
ROMANIA: Humanitas Fiction
SWEDEN: Norstedts
UNITED STATES: W.W. Norton / Liveright

The City Wall

A thrilling and amusing novel about extremist hipsters and in-migrants in urban Helsinki in vein of Animal Farm and Look Who’s Back.

The countryside undergoes an economic collapse and the capital is flocked with in-migrants. Hillbillies, hicks and rednecks from all corners of Finland arrive to Helsinki en massé, and there’s someone who does not like that one single bit. Waltteri Finné, a born-and-raised Helsinki citizen, start-up entrepreneur, blogger and owner of a well-groomed lumberjack beard gathers his extremist hipsters to purge the capital from unwanted guests. But journalist Jyry Pesiö is on the case – will he succeed in preventing the hipsters’ terror attack, and more importantly, will he get his break-through scoop?

The City Wall is a novel with a thriller plotline about thriving cities and the emptying countryside. It’s about prejudice, patriots, problems and possibilities. At the same time amusing and serious, it manages to relay something important about our time while being completely preposterous.

The Bystander

A witty and honest artist’s novel about a year in the life of a debut author.

The Bystander is a journey of one year in a life of its writer. When the narrator’s debut novel is published, she feels like everything has changed. Strangely enough no one else seems to notice this. Thus begins an intensive year of esteemed literary prizes, ambivalent reviews, strange interview questions and awkward marketing activities. All the while the narrator ponders the meaning of it all. Why are we here? What is behind the space? What if you are lonely? And its’s spring, and you had just written a book and everything was meant to be great, but people just had their partners and high-quality sofas, and ‘we gotta go’ they said? What if you were expecting something else, but there was just silence everywhere?

* * *

The Bystander is a sharp story of a woman with a looming fear of being invisible, need to achieve, relentless chase for being heard. In addition to pointing out the problems of the art criticism and literary world itself, the novel speaks about the loneliness and being a bystander in 21st century. It asks urgent questions about identity and family, but refuses to give any simple answers.

At the same time ironic and earnest, the novel burrows into the issues of existence, social norms and unconventional choices. The text glows in the depiction of everyday details: watering the house plants, riding a bike and cooking noodles. It shifts between fiction and reality, mixing shame and self-contemptuous humour with sharp narration.

Chillingly ironic, crunching depiction of the today’s world and the female position on it. Talentedly constructed artist novel with lean and precise sentences and an autobiographical voice that turns many times into essay-like narration.

The Bystander is Saara Turunen’s second novel. Her first, Love/Monster (2015), was awarded with a prestigious Helsingin Sanomat Literary prize.


Rights sold:

FINLAND: Tammi (orig.)
SWEDEN: Wahlström & Widstrand

The Angry Widow

A Man Called Ove meets Sex and the City

For the past 12 years, 74-year-old Ulla has cared for her paralyzed husband, a mean and slightly alcoholic man. At his funeral, all she can think is: finally! She reconnects with old friends and starts living every day as if it were her last. Her adult children try to stop her newfound debauchery in many ways – but the biggest change comes along in the guise of an older gentleman.

The Angry Widow is an amusing and entertaining story about how friendships and love affairs change when you grow old. With warmth and sarcasm Lindgren examines the questions of what it means to be seventy in a world where everyone over 65 ticks the same age box in a survey.


Rights sold (The Angry Widow):
FINLAND, Teos
CZECH REPUBLIC, XYZ
ESTONIA: Pegasus
GERMANY, Kiepenheuer & Witsch
ITALY, Marsilio
SLOVAKIA, XYZ
SPAIN, Suma / Penguin Random House

Raspberry Boat Refugee

Mikko Virtanen has a problem. He does not want to be a Finnish man, the grumpy epitome of anxiety and low self-esteem. He has decided to become Swedish instead, by any means necessary.

The road to Swedishness is a long one, and the price to pay high. But what wouldn’t you do for a chance to live as a member of the most democratic society of the world, in the ‘folkhemmet’ of ABBA, mamma’s meat balls and social democracy?

Mikko Virtanen becomes Mikael Andersson – the empathic, loving and dialogical father of two from Gothenburg, but when his lifetime wish is fulfilled, everything goes haywire.


Rights sold:
FINLAND, Otava (Orig. publisher)
GERMANY, Nagel & Kimche
SWEDEN, Brombergs

The Amazing Life and Times of Coco Kafka

An assured, sweeping debut about life, love and science with language like postmodern fireworks. With echoes of Diana Gabaldon, and H. G. Wells’ The Time Machine, a must-read for David Mitchell fans.

Coco Kafka and her colleague Chang are nearing a scientific breakthrough: they are about to find a cure for blindness. Their Russian rivals Popov and Karpov are hot on their heels: the race against time is on. But who’s playing tricks on whom? where will the poisonous cholera toxin end up? who stole the priceless Manet painting? and where in time and space is the mysterious Mrs. Sagiv now travelling?

The Amazing Life and Times of Coco Kafka is an abundant and mischievous debut about the unseeing and the seeing, of metamorphoses and crisscrossing realities, and of epic love.

Wilderness Warrior

When the End of the World As We Know It arrives, Ahma is prepared. He has his house in the backwoods, a food cache and vegetable patch, and his guns. He can face The End alone, just like his namesake ’ahma’, the wolverine. Yet for reasons unknown even to him, the hardware store’s cashier Pamsu, Linnea, who looks after useless creatures like horses, and Kapu, the manliest man alive, all crash at Ahma’s cabin and he is forced to join their small tribe.

Laura Gustafsson’s third novel is a study of the human race: of the individual and the community. It’s inspired by survivalism, green movements, the Hobbesian social contract and notion of “a war of all against all”.

Decent Ingredients

In 1956, Helsinki housewife Saara befriends her upstairs neighbor Elisabeth, who throws parties for artists, lives to eat and corresponds with faraway friends. As they get to know each other, Saara learns that Elisabeth is everything Saara is not: fashionable, independent, a citizen of the world. And a spy.

With echoes of Virginia Woolf’s Mrs Dalloway  and Linn Ullmann’s domestic portrayals, Decent Ingredients is a story about the bourgeoisie of Helsinki during the Cold War; about forbidden love, dangerous secrets and, about food, which reflects life, love, class, sexuality and politics throughout this richly-detailed and atmospheric novel by the award-winning Parkkinen.


Rights sold:

Original publisher: FINLAND, Teos
ITALY, Aspasia/Sovera Edizioni

Sex and Mathematics

Berlin-based Finnish mathematician, Erika leads a controlled, ordered life trying to purge herself of superfluous emotions and needs. Yet when the worst imaginable happens to her, her world comes crashing down and she escapes back to her homeland. Meanwhile, in Helsinki, a young man named Tuovi is looking online for love in a desperate attempt to soothe his fears when an oil tanker hits the rocks on the Baltic Sea a devastating impact, as the two lost souls find salvation in each other in unexpected ways.

Sex and Mathematics is a frighteningly intelligent and visceral novel about people in crisis, environmental disasters, about the confusing and erratic life and the beauty and logic of mathematics. And about the agonies and ecstasies of sex.

Carried by Wings

Juhani teaches Finnish and literature in a high school. He has just divorced from his wife Hanna, when a new student enrolls in the school. Marianne is young, beautiful, clever – and 17.

They start talking about books and movies, just like a teacher and his pet might. When Marianne shows him her short stories, they start meeting up outside of school hours. Juhani realizes soon that there is something more serious between them.

The novel is a beautiful and surprising story about falling in love. It is full of intertextuality and of course refers in a clever and self-aware way to Nabokov, too, but takes unexpected turns. It is a psychologically sharp book for book lovers.

Roots

The dental chart maps this story of a man’s journey, tracing his lost father’s footsteps from one country to another continent.

Onni Kirnuvaara left to get groceries when his son was just a child – and never returned. The father was never mentioned again. Years later, during a root canal treatment, the son finds out that in addition to his bad dental karma he has a dentist brother, left behind as a child just like him.

The brothers embark on a journey to find out the truth about their father. After many detours they find themselves in the Australian outback. Lousy fathers are fathers too, after all.

On their way to Darwin, secrets are revealed, new family members are found, and lengths of dental floss are needed. Digging to the roots hurts, but under the Southern Cross the ache starts to ease.


Rights sold:
FINLAND, Otava (Original publisher)
CZECH REPUBLIC, XYZ
ESTONIA: Eesti Raamat
GERMANY, Nagel & Kimche
HUNGARY, Kossuth
ITALY, Iperborea
LITHUANIA, Alma Littera
NETHERLANDS, Prometheus
SWEDEN, Brombergs

Love/Monster

Love/Monster is a strong, unique novel about the lust for life, shame, yearning, and trying to belong somewhere. It is a self-portrait of an artist that expands into an exploration of cultural identity, gender roles, and the demand of being “normal”.

In Love/Monster a young woman is finding her own place in the world by constantly changing the scenery. Instead of answers, the only thing she finds is her own shadow, the feeling of worthlessness and the inability to love herself. The narrative voice is often playful and amusing, as the novel tackles big themes with the aid of humor.

Over 12,000 copies sold!

 


Original publisher: FINLAND, Tammi

Souls

Souls was nominated for the 2015 Finlandia Prize, the country’s highest literary honor. Praised for its lyrical prose and ability to depict a child’s point of view, Souls tells the story of a small-town Finnish family whose daughter unexpectedly disappears.


Rights sold:
Original publisher: FINLAND, Tammi

 

They Know Not What They Do

A sweeping, multilayered story of family conflicts, the ethics of science and the search for identity in an impersonal society.

When professor Joe Chayefski’s neuroscience lab in Baltimore is attacked by animal rights activists, he doesn’t connect the dots at first. But when he receives a phone call from Alina, his Finnish ex-wife, he begins to gradually realize that the threats on his career and new family are connected to Samuel, the son he left behind in Finland two decades ago. Joe soon learns that his son’s life has gone badly astray, and that Samuel has devoted himself to extreme animal rights activism. Samuel is now somewhere in the United States, but neither Alina nor the authorities know his exact location. Joe realizes that he has to take action to protect his wife and two daughters from his estranged son, by any means necessary.

By depicting its three main characters in an intense struggle to understand an increasingly confusing world, They Know Not What They Do offers readers both piercing psychological acumen and a striking dystopian satire of a neuro-digitalized Western society in which nothing is private and everything is for sale.


RIGHTS SOLD

FINLAND, Tammi (Original publisher)
CHINA, China International Radio Press
CZECH REPUBLIC, LEDA
FRANCE, Fayard
GERMANY, Piper
HUNGARY, Cser
LITHUANIA, Alma Littera
NETHERLANDS, Signatuur/A.W. Bruna
POLAND, Foksal
VIETNAM, Chibooks
WORLD ENGLISH, Oneworld

The Explorer & Other Stories

“This sly book showcases the quietly strange, unsettling short fiction of this acclaimed Finnish writer. Vainonen is renowned for his Finnish translations of the works of Seamus Heaney, Jonathan Swift, and William Shakespeare. Vainonen’s first collection of short stories was awarded the Helsingin Sanomat Literature Prize and his work has been featured in such iconic collections as the Dedalus Book of Finnish Fantasy. This first English-language collection includes stories from Jyrki Vainonen’s three collections and is translated by J. Robert Tupasela and Anna Volmari, with one story translated by Hildi Hawkins. Introduction by Johanna Sinisalo.”

–  Jeff VanderMeer, Cheeky Frawg


Rights sold:
FINLAND, Loki-kirjat (Orig. publisher)
THAILAND, Gamme Magie
UKRAINE, Komora
WORLD ENGLISH, Cheeky Frawg

At Swift’s Door

Lennart Beren, having just spent five years in Ireland, gets a phone call from an old friend, Johannes Kelps, who will be dying soon. ”I want you to finish my book”, Johannes says. After the death of Johannes, Lennart moves into his house, as agreed. There he discovers a secret room with a strange device, and suddenly Lennart finds himself back in Ireland. But he has also travelled back in time, and has become Watt, a man-servant of Jonathan Swift. Soon he – and the reader – is initiated into the life of the famous satirist.

This highly inventive novel is a dramatic tale of ill fate and a brave fight against injustice. The drama unfolds in part in a fictitious Finnish setting, in part in Ireland in the 18th century. And the drama ends, finally, where it all began: in the house of Johannes Kelps, once a famous scientist who withdrew suddenly from the academic world and bought an old, remote house in the country. Why? What happened to him?

The Towers

A unique story of death, revenge and atonement from a true Master of Surprise. The Towers is a perceptive and psychologically charged story, mixed with the elements of fantasy, erotica and horror. Jyrki Vainonen’s works have previously been likened to those of Roald Dahl and Julio Cortàzar, and his world is found in the wild no-man’s-land between reality and fantasy.

Nostalgia

A satire about working life, media, and the price of success. A novel about a workweek that’s completely normal – in other words, utter hell.

On Monday morning, freelance journalist Anni Syysaho signs a contract she can’t refuse. Late Tuesday night her door- bell rings; it’s the courier delivering the background material for the piece – Reorganization Consultant Maaria Riento packed in five plastic boxes. A professional crisis and deadlines loom simultaneously, her husband is threatened with being laid off, and the text disappears from a can of Lidl lasagna. The week’s not even halfway over yet; maybe Anni has time to find another job?

How did this happen to us? Whatever happened to our ideals, to all sense of meaning? When did the other party at the glossy conference table, an old collegemate, turn into a highly efficient talking robot? How crazy can the working world get? Pauliina Susi’s tragicomic satire about work, 21st-century media, and the price of success would make us cry if it didn’t make us laugh so hard.

Jelly Control

A refreshing human comedy about pleasure and the dangers of self-deceit, a fatal mistake and eating jam.

The Silola family is the picture of perfection. There’s the house by the sea that looks like a sugar cube. There’s the father, a famous conductor who exhibits absolutely no trace of the famous Finnish melancholy. There’s the mother, an elegant interior designer who facelifts people’s homes with the gentle bedside manner of a family doctor.

And then there are the three children: beautiful, brilliant 22-year-old Astra; 18-year-old novice body-builder Silmu; and 4-year-old Pelagia, an afterthought who scatters toy animals around the family’s gorgeous home.

Everything is perfect as long as no one finds the carefully hidden vials and the hypodermic needles unsmiling boys jab in each other in the dark corners of the gym. And no one must know about the yacht, its steamed-up windows and chandelier, its shackles and whips. And let’s keep quiet about that fatal mistake on that holiday trip.

Jelly Control is a human comedy about family, happiness, corporeality, pleasure and self-deceit. It is also a lively novel about the dangers of eating jam, the ins and outs of gym etiquette and the basic principles of throwing the party of the year.


Rights sold:

FINLAND, WSOY (Original publisher)
GERMANY, Suhrkamp

Ray Girl

A mystical love story. Beauty meets two beasts in search of the meaning of life and death.

Vic had no expectations of life after death. But here he is, watching while a serious woman pulls a serious little boy on a sledge through a snow storm. How did it all happen?

Vivacious Säde (Ray) and cynical English archaeologist Vic are beavering away on excavations in Finland, led by the fiery and charismatic Voula with a motley crew of disciples worshipping ancient gods.

At home, Säde has Antti, a successful game programmer, waiting for her. What will the excavations turn up? Do gods exist? Who wins the heart of carefree, disorganized and enigmatic Säde?

Everyone loves Säde. She’s every man’s dream and every woman’s best friend, a fun-loving and delightfully sexually uninhibited young archaeologist. But such girls don’t really exist. The deepest secrets lurk behind the broadest smiles. This is not a girl you want to invite to the dig.

Ray Girl is a mystical love story, an unusual love triangle, a comedy about the collision between faith and science, a coming-of-age story that combines genres and a novel about an atheist who wants to belong to a cult. It is sure to make you laugh and likely to make you cry. The second, highly anticipated novel from a unique writing talent.


Rights sold:
FINLAND, WSOY (Orig. publisher)
CZECH REPUBLIC, Nakladatelství Brána
DENMARK, Turbine
GERMANY, Suhrkamp

Jingle Land

Sometimes even Christmas has a sinister heart.

Deep in the Finnish wilderness stands a glittery theme park called Jingle Land, ruled by eccentric megalomaniac Veikko H. Halkio. His vision for a land where Christmas is eternal includes strippers dressed as sexy elves, hordes of creepy animatronic reindeer and the world’s largest chocolate fountain. In order to complete his dream, Veikko desperately yearns for his boyhood crush, Molli, to perform at the park.

Molli and Veikko share a dark secret, and she has spent most of her life trying to put the incident behind her. Now a happily married mother of two, she wants nothing to do with his holiday-obsessed extravaganza. But when a devastating accident leaves her as the sole breadwinner, she has to accept Veikko’s offer.

Although rehearsing an avant-garde Christmas show awakens some of Molli’s long-dormant ambitions as a performer, she soon encounters buried secrets at Jingle Land – both in Veikko’s potentially criminal business operations and deep underneath the park. There are some elements of Jingle Land of which even Veikko appears to be unaware.


Original publisher: FINLAND, WSOY

Book of Angels

A young father’s stunningly intensely depicted trial of strength in a time of difficulty.

Tuomas has been a single dad to Aino for so long that she no longer asks him where Mommy is. When Tuomas loses his job and his house burns down, things start feeling irredeemably hopeless. But then into the picture steps an old friend, who decides to save Tuomas and bring him back to the land of the living.

Book of Angels is an intense and poetic description of the waning of an individual’s strength and his slow ascent to fresh hope. It is a story of consolation, a bold description of the grandeur of the small, everyday things in life, of the fundamental questions of existence. Why, and for whom, do we live? What is love?

Pääskynen once again exhibits an astounding capacity, familiar to readers of The Day of Wrath (Vihan päivä, 2006) to see deep into the human heart.

Your Love Is Infinite

A shocking yet bright work about a harsh subject.

Your Love Is Infinite tells about 6-year-old Saara, who has been taken to her grandparents’ house for the summer because her parents aren’t able to care for her. Grandpa is the only adult Saara believes loves her, but it is precisely his violent love that drives Saara into a world of fantasy and guilt. Saara longs for her mother, but she isn’t able to help, and Saara is left to her grandfather’s mercy.

Without blaming anyone, Peura weaves a taut, beautiful, powerful tale about a difficult subject: incest. She writes about children’s trust and dependence, and how they manage to survive.


Shortlisted for the Finlandia Prize in 2001

RIGHTS SOLD

SPAIN, Sexto Piso

Under the Water

Maria Peura’s third novel Under the Water is a powerful story of a girl who grows up with her parents on an isolated island in Finnish Lapland.

When she moves to a university town to study German language and literature, she is unable to adapt to her new surroundings, with even escalators provoking fear and wonder in her. The girl doesn’t know her limits at all, nor does she know how to behave. She is an untamed child of nature in the wrong environment. The girl nevertheless manages to find some friends among the immigrant community. Peura’s sprawling novel is overflowing with sea winds, the storms of inner life, and the powerful presence of nature.


RIGHTS SOLD

GERMANY, Saxa

At the Edge of Light

At the Edge of Light is a suffocating story of a true-life Romeo and a Juliet born somewhere in the far north, in a world of permafrost and insufferable people.

The novel is set in a close village community and tells the story of a girl and the boy she loves. Burning passion threatens to consume the lovers, and other people are a source of pain, but there is also room for absurd, ad-hoc humour. Peura describes her characters beautifully, heartbreakingly and with great honesty. Readers fear for them, and hope that the passion and curiosity that these young lovers struggle so vainly to conceal will not completely destroy them.


Rights sold:

English (UK)

And the Stars Fall

Having grown up in a northern Finnish town with a predominantly Laestadian population, Anni becomes more familiar with her roots and this sect of Christianity while working on her master’s thesis. Immersing herself into her research is helping her process her recent, painful divorce. Anni is also doing her best to support her 15-year-old daughter Mirka, who has sought refuge in drugs and is spiraling out of control.

When Anni meets an interesting man online and Mirka finds a supportive therapy group, life appears to settle into new routines. Suddenly, however, controlling and cult-like elements begin to surface in Mirka’s therapy, and Anni becomes concerned: the threads of manipulation are both invisible and difficult to break. Meanwhile Anni is re-examining painful buried secrets from her childhood. The lives of both mother and daughter are pushed to the verge. Maria Peura writes potently and honestly about the fragile human mind and the nature of manipulation.

Scissors

Laura Lindstedt’s impressive novel Scissors succeeds in developing from a description of contemporary adoptive parenthood and motherhood into a discourse on fundamental issues.

Scissors is a story of a woman, Maria, who adopts a little girl from China. Great expectations and the desire to love turn to inadequateness before the child’s blank stare. What happens if a child doesn’t respond at all? Or if the mother and the child are afraid of each other?

Lindstedt writes boldly about a woman’s life and the need to love one’s child. The novel discusses sensitive matters that are not often talked about: the distance between child and parent, the fear of failure and finally a mother’s mental instability.

Scissors manifests both a great command of language and structure and a skillful ability to manipulate plot.


RIGHTS SOLD

DENMARK, Turbine

Oneiron

Seven women meet in a white, undefined space seconds after their deaths. Time, as we understand it, has ceased to exist, and all bodily sensations seem to have disappeared.

None of the women can remember what happened to her, or how she got there. Performance artist Shlomith from New York, chief accountant Polina from Moscow, heart transplant patient Rosa Imaculada from Brazil, upper-class Nina from Marseilles who is expecting twins, Wlbgis from the Netherlands, who suffers from throat cancer, Senegalese Maimuna, who dreams of a career as a model, and Austrian teenager, Ulrike. They don’t know each other. They don’t know why they are there – or where they are. In turn they try to remember, to piece together the fragments of their lives, their identities, their lost loves, and to pinpoint the moment they left their former lives behind.

Lindstedt plays with genres from essay to poetry, transitioning from humour to rage – while asking her reader to contemplate the question of death’s inevitability and what follows it. As also in Lindstedt’s acclaimed debut novel Scissors, Oneiron addresses the challenges of communication on several levels.


Rights sold:

Original publisher: FINLAND, Teos
WORLD ENGLISH, Oneworld
BULGARIA, Faber
CZECH REPUBLIC, Argo
DENMARK, Rosinante & Co.
FRANCE, Gallimard
HUNGARY, Scolar
ITALY, Elliot
LITHUANIA, Versus Aureus
NORWAY, Oktober
POLAND, Poznańskie
ROMANIA, Paralela 45
SWEDEN, Norstedts
SPAIN: Armaenia

The End of Sunset Grove

The final part of the trilogy marks a return to the retirement community. But the place no longer feels like home, and has turned into a state-funded, technology-driven pilot project in elderly care. The conclusion brings together characters lost along the way, and murky details are brought to light. Legal justice is also served – in unexpected ways. A natural, long-awaited death finally collects some, but still not all, of our main characters.


RIGHTS SOLD

Original publisher: FINLAND, Teos
CZECH REPUBLIC, Albatros Media
DENMARK, Jensen & Dalgaard
ESTONIA, Varrak
GERMANY, Kiepenheuer & Witsch
FRANCE, Calmann-Lévy
ITALY, Marsilio
SLOVAKIA, Albatros Media
SPAIN, Penguin Random House
WORLD ENGLISH, Pan Macmillan

Escape from Sunset Grove

Sunset Grove retirement home turns into a kind of hell when it is taken over by foreign construction workers cursing fluently in Finnish. The noise is deafening, a hole appears in the wall, things disappear and residents have to use a portable toilet.

Residents Siiri, Irma and Anna-Liisa, all older than 90, decide to move into a shared apartment in the exotic neighbourhood of Hakaniemi. All three have their own habits and quirks, and life together isn’t entirely free of friction. The women also learn about the sad differences in quality with at-home assistance, and are forced to become familiar with terminal care and questions surrounding euthanasia.

Our heroes also can’t help looking into the suspicious plumbing project at Sunset Grove. As the mystery unfolds, they begin to find out that few people in this world have a fully clean record.


RIGHTS SOLD

Original publisher: FINLAND, Teos
CZECH REPUBLIC, Albatros Media
DENMARK, Jensen & Dalgaard
ESTONIA, Varrak
GERMANY, Kiepenheuer & Witsch
FRANCE, Calmann-Lévy
ITALY, Marsilio
SLOVAKIA, Albatros Media
SPAIN, Penguin Random House
SWEDEN, Norstedts
WORLD ENGLISH, Pan Macmillan

Death in Sunset Grove

Who could imagine that anything illegal – whether it be suspicious deaths, thefts or the covert trading of medications – could happen in Sunset Grove retirement home? Its 90-year-old residents Siiri and Irma certainly can’t.

The lives of Siiri, Irma, and other Sunset Grove inhabitants are filled mostly with empty time punctuated by glasses of red wine, tram rides and funerals. Investigating the sudden strange occurrences at Sunset Grove, however, proves to be a more interesting pastime than playing cards with the ambassador and the woman in the wide-brimmed hat – not to mention the never-ending arts and crafts sessions, gym classes or accordion evenings (which the residents of the house attend mostly out of pity towards the employees).

Death in Sunset Grove is a devilishly funny and suspenseful story about old age, friendship and life in a relatively ordinary retirement home. Here the only fate worse than death is being drugged up and locked away inside the dementia ward. Even the sharpest senior can’t decipher all the nuances of this place; thankfully a few young people, including members of the biker gang and a grandchild’s boyfriend, offer some help.


RIGHTS SOLD: 
FINLAND, Teos (Original publisher)
CZECH REPUBLIC, Albatros Media
DENMARK, Jensen & Dalgaard
ESTONIA, Varrak
GERMANY, Kiepenheuer & Witsch
FRANCE, Calmann-Lévy
ITALY, Marsilio
SLOVAKIA, Albatros Media
SPAIN, Penguin Random House
SWEDEN, Norstedts
WORLD ENGLISH, Pan Macmillan


Reading materials:
English sample (read an extract here)

Gifts

A story about mothers and generations, and how wishes and expectations are passed from one generation to the next.

Tuulia is a housewife with a husband and two children. She is adamant about staying home as long as their youngest is still small, but at times she longs to return to the safer, more familiar halls of academia.

How to pass the tests of motherhood and parenting without flunking? Tuulia feels that she is an intermediary, carefully weighing her values and attitudes before passing them on. Her social life is also restructured, as other mothers step into view: a peer group with which she can share the growing pains of the playground.

Gifts is a novel that seeks to find the roots of the everyday, to remember the things that we often forget. Life with children is not an epic tale, but one built up of small, often irrelevant little events and associations – the details that are effaced in the face of more dramatic life changes.

The Ladies of Seven Brothers

Seven Brothers, authored by Finland’s national author Aleksis Kivi in 1870, is widely considered to be the most important novel in Finnish history. In this critically lauded work, Riina Katajavuori gives the story a modern – and distinctively feminine – spin that, in spite of its clever allusions, doesn’t require knowledge of Kivi’s original work. She throws a classic into a blender.

All the guys are crazy about 17-year-old Wenla Männistö, who is whole-heartedly enjoying her youth. Her mother is the practical but enigmatic midwife Marja Männistö. Alli Jukola, the mother of seven, contemplates the past while lounging on the edge of a cloud. We also hear from straight-talking washer Kajsa Rajamäki and Ansku Seunala, who believes in angels. All the while, the slacker brothers of Jukola trade bad jokes in front of the TV.

The Buyout

In the world of big money, there are two emotional states. The markets are dominated either by fear or greed.

The international financial crisis is mangling capital markets, fortunes are being crushed in seconds and others are being made just as quickly. A Finnish asset management company founded by three friends descends into the eye of the storm, setting off a fierce competition: who will buy the company for themselves – and with whom?

The Buyout is a financial thriller. Instead of the world politics and violence characteristic of action thrillers, the suspense arises from the intrigues of people working in the capital markets. Karo Hämäläinen has combined the excitement of an action thriller with page-turning narration in a social novel. The result is a hybrid – a novel of unusually depth and narrative control that is also highly readable and entertaining.

As an investment expert, Hämäläinen has his facts straight and reveals a whole range of pitfalls present in the world of high finance over the course of the novel. The repurchase of the Finnish asset management company that functions as the framework for the action of the novel is based on actual events, the downfall of the Icelandic Glitnir Bank. Hämäläinen spent the blackest day of the financial crisis of 2008 in the offices of Glitnir, observing the actions and emotions of the toughest Finnish capital market professionals. He has also interviewed the most important Finnish bankers who were involved in the sale of Glitnir, receiving valuable behind-the-scenes information.


Shortlisted for the Savonia Prize 2011
Tampere Literary Prize 2012

Reading materials:
Finnish edition
Spanish edition
English sample

RIGHTS SOLD:

SPANISH & CATALAN, Ediciones B

 

The Bailout

A topical, timely novel delving into the core of the European debt crisis.

The socialist opposition leader of Hellenia is ready to do his last favour to his fatherland: to sign – and to resign. A young and eager hedge fund salesman has his once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to show his boss what he is capable of. When the politician is kidnapped, billions of dollars are at risk (as well as some secondary matters, such as human lives).
In The Bailout, people and countries behave like the stock market: they pretend to be something they are not.

Reading materials:
Finnish edition
English sample

Alone

Alone is a psychologically precise portrait of a top athlete, who had a burning will to succeed and a manic hatred of losing. He raced against his inner demons to meet the high standards he had set for himself and achieved everything in life – except for one thing. Alone is a story of loneliness and unrecruited love.

Karo Hämäläinen’s award-winning novel is loosely based on the life story of the greatest distance runner of all times, the “Flying Finn” Paavo Nurmi, who ran his way to the top of the world in the 1920’s. It reads as a literary novel set against the backdrop of the rapidly industrializing Finland of the 20th century, echoing “Running” by Jean Echenoz.


Original publisher: FINLAND, WSOY

 

Secrets of my Vanity Case

A sneakily wise novel for grown women: a simultaneously light and merciless story of self-examination.

With her 50th birthday approaching, publishing director Tytti Karakoski notices a decline in her previously springy energy level, enthusiasm and curiosity towards the world. Tiredness gives way to exhaustion and languor to indifference. Tytti isn’t quite sure what has happened, but thankfully her stable financial situation allows her to take part in an experiment: a writing sabbatical.

It’s time to stop and contemplate a change – and to make an alphabetic list of all the things that matter. These notes form a tapestry of the life of a single adult woman: Kaisa Haatanen’s debut novel is a delicious and sharp portrait of what this life should look like, and what it actually is.