Black Moon Inn

Reetta Niemelä

Original title: Mustan Kuun majatalo

Author: Reetta Niemelä

Illustrator: Katri Kirkkopelto

Published: 2021

Publisher: Lasten Keskus

Genre: Middle Grade (8-12 Years)

Pages: 310

Part of a series: Black Moon Inn

Reading material:

English sample & synopsis

Black Moon Inn starts a new magical middle-grade series irresistibly blending mythology and environmental protection!

  • Winner of the Arvid Lydecken Prize 2022
  • Nominated for the Finlandia Prize 2022 - Audience favourite!
  • Illustrator Katri Kirkkopelto was nominated for the Finlandia Prize several times (2005, 2016, 2020) and is the winner of the Kylli Koski Prize 2009
  • Author and poet Reetta Niemelä won the The Kaarina Helakisa Prize in 2011 and has so far been nominated for the Finlandia Prize three times!

The animal-loving Saimi Salaper and her veterinarian father move to the city of Bluehill in order to set up a hospital for wild animals there. By coincidence, they buy an old inn, where one can hear weird noises behind closed doors, see rare butterflies fly past on the yard, and, at the rooftop, there seems to be… a perch for dragons.

Little by little, the house reveals its secrets to Saimi, and soon the Black Moon Inn is open for creatures of the secret folk who seek refuge there: the trolls, the fairies, and many more. But there’s a threat lurking just behind a corner, and the Inn takes both Saimi and the reader on an exciting adventure into the world of the secret folk.

The novel, which refreshes the tradition of fairytales, speaks for environmental protection, animal rights and imagination. Just as important as it is to take care of nature and animals, it is to care for the world of magic, miracles, and imaginary creatures. The characters, customs and living areas of the trolls and fairies have been illustrated beautifully and with attention to detail. One wants to stop to appreciate each image, but also feels a strong need to carry on reading the story.

Finlandia Jury 2022

Download reading materials

Rights sold:
FINLAND: Lasten Keskus (orig.)

Foreign covers

About author

Reetta Niemelä

Reetta Niemelä is an award-winning children’s author. She has written poetry collections, picture books, nonfiction, study material and many beloved book series for children. For her work, she’s been awarded e.g. Kaarina Helakisa Award and for her nonfiction the Tietopöllö award.  Niemelä’s fantasy novel Black Moon Inn, illustrated by Katri Kirkkopelto, won the Arvid Lydecken Award, was nominated for Finlandia Junior and was selected as the audience favourite.

Topics related to nature and especially animals are recurring themes in Niemelä’s work. She wants to focus on how literature and language can give a voice to the silent ones.


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