Anne-Maija Aalto

Original title: Korento

Author: Anne-Maija Aalto

Published: 2020

Publisher: Otava

Genre: Young Adult (13 or 14+)

Pages: 387

Reading material:

Finnish pdf

  • Independent prequel to 2021 Finlandia winner Where the Light Comes In!
  • Topelius Prize Nominee 2020
  • Young Aleksis Award Nominee 2021
  • Rights sold to Editions Milan in France in a two-book deal!

A shocking, brilliantly told story about resistance in an unequal society.   Two young women, Satomi and Mai have always stuck together. They were born in an internment village on an island that was called Japan before sea level rose. They are non-citizens whose purpose is to serve full citizens.

On good nights they go to the seaside together to wade. They still have that, even if everything else has been taken away from them.

Then Commander Rafikov takes Mai to make her a Nymph.

And Satomi can’t just wait anymore.

“I’m standing here and coming apart inside, just like that. I’m only thinking of the end.”

“Dragonfly is a dystopian set in the near future, a world after a flood. [--] The impactful book narrates with a beautiful language a story about friendship, loss, and the inequality in society and between genders.”

–Topelius Prize jury motivations

Download reading materials

Rights sold:
FRANCE: Éditions Milan

About author

Anne-Maija Aalto

Anne-Maija Aalto is an award-winning Finnish author of both YA and adult fiction. Her YA novel Where the Light Comes In won the prestigious Finlandia Prize for Children’s and Young Adult Literature in 2021 and has received praise for its effortless narration, beautiful prose and compellingly current story.

Where the Light Comes In is a standalone sequel for Dragonfly which was nominated for the Topelius Prize in 2020. The prize is awarded yearly to an expectional novel for young people, and the jury described Dragonfly as “a deeply touching and beautifully written story of friendship, loss and social inequality.” Her other works include YA novel Into Deep Water and novel The Silence of Snow. Her books often dwelve into the darker sides of humanity, exploring the themes of loss, loneliness, identity and coming of age.

Anne-Maija holds a Bachelor of Arts in literature from the University of Turku where she also studied English and creative writing. She lives in Turku with her husband and an extensive collection of half-filled notebooks. When she isn’t writing, she can most likely be found walking in nature with her camera or lounging on the couch with a good book.


2021, Young Adult (13 or 14+)

Anne-Maija Aalto

Where the Light Comes In

2020, Young Adult (13 or 14+)

Anne-Maija Aalto