Cruel is the Night

Karo Hämäläinen

Original title: Ilta on julma

Author: Karo Hämäläinen

Published: 2013

Publisher: WSOY

Genres: Literary Fiction, Crime & Suspense

Pages: 345

Reading material:

Finnish text

English sample

Three cell phones ring in an opulent London apartment. The calls go unanswered because their recipients are all dead.

Earlier that night, four Finnish friends meet for dinner. It’s been ten years since the host, Robert, has seen his once-best friend, Mikko. The two had an ideological falling-out because Robert, a banker, made millions off of unethical (but not illegal) interest rate manipulation. Mikko, meanwhile, is an investigative journalist who has dedicated his career to bringing down corrupt financiers and politicians. Mikko’s wife, Veera—with whom Robert once had a secret affair—and Robert’s young trophy wife, Elise, are also joining the fray. Mikko has arrived in London with an agenda and thinks he’s about to get away with murder, but he has no idea what’s on the menu for the night: not only does every diner have a bone to pick with another, but there’s an arsenal of deadly weapons hiding in plain sight.

And by the end of the night, there will only be one survivor…

A compelling setup. The diners’ repartee and the flashbacks revealing their relationships call to mind Herman Koch’s The Dinner . . . But Hämäläinen’s novel takes things to a completely different level. The reader follows the events safely through a wall of Plexiglas, holding back laughter, yet absolutely absorbed.

- Helsingin Sanomat newspaper, Finland

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Rights sold:
FINLAND: WSOY (orig.)
FRANCE: Actes Sud
ITALY: Newton Compton Editori s.r.l.

Foreign covers

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.

Bibliography


2015, Literary Fiction, Crime & Suspense

Karo Hämäläinen

Alone


2013, Literary Fiction, Crime & Suspense

Karo Hämäläinen

Cruel is the Night


2012, Literary Fiction, Crime & Suspense

Karo Hämäläinen

The Bailout


2011, Literary Fiction, Crime & Suspense

Karo Hämäläinen

The Buyout