Karo Hämäläinen

Original title: Yksin

Author: Karo Hämäläinen

Published: 2015

Publisher: WSOY

Genres: Literary Fiction, Crime & Suspense

Pages: 238

Reading material:

Finnish text

English sample

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.

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About author

Karo Hämäläinen

Karo Hämäläinen (b. 1976) has two passions: literature and the stock market, and has a 15-year background as an economics reporter. He works as the managing editor managing editor of Parnasso, Finland’s best-known literary publication. Hämäläinen’s novel The Buyout was shortlisted for the Savonia Prize in 2011 and received the Tampere Literary Prize in 2012.

Hämäläinen has studied both in the humanities and in economics. Following stints in Helsinki, Munich and Berlin, he now lives in Tampere, Finland. He is a popular lecturer and guest commentator, and has had his own radio show. In his professional work, he uses Finnish, English, German and Swedish. In his spare time, Hämäläinen likes reading and running; his record marathon time set in 2010 is 3:04:04.


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