The Crossing of the Green Dragon

Leena Lehtolainen

Original title: Vihreän lohikäärmeen risteys

Author: Leena Lehtolainen

Published: 2022

Publisher: FINLAND: Tammi (orig.)

Genre: Young Adult (13 or 14+)

Pages: 281

Reading material:

Finnish text. English sample. 

The Crossing of the Green Dragon is a YA thriller about loss and the power of friendship. About things you don’t want to reveal to adults. About a world where fear and hope are entangled in each other, and where nobody makes it on their own.

  • New YA thriller by Finland’s best-selling female crime writer!
  • Leena Lehtolainen has sold over 2,5 million copies worldwide and has been translated into 30 languages! In the US, only Jo Nesbø has sold more copies!

Who has painted the image of a green dragon taking flight on the electronic box at the crossroads? Why does it keep appearing again and again, despite being washed and painted over?

High school freshman Viggo knows that the original painting was done by his brother Joel shortly before his disappearance. Joel used to play Japanese mahjong and the green dragon was his favorite tile in the game. Joel has been missing for over two years and the police have no leads whatsoever. Did he leave of his own volition or is he the victim of a crime?

Selma and her friend Sennu Koivu used to go and see the painting. Sennu, the daughter of a Vietnamese Chinese mother, used to play an Eastern dragon in their childhood games and Selma the Western one. Together, the girls came up with the language of the dragons that nobody else could understand. Sennu has since passed away, and Selma often visits the dragon to seek connection with her deceased friend.

Selma’s sibling Savu has worries of their own. A gang idolizing roadman culture has managed to extort Savu to join them in stealing designer clothes. Selma doesn’t want to idly watch Savu’s demise. Can she gather the courage to share her worries with her former best friend’s father, who works in the police department’s youth intervention unit?

“THE CROSSING OF THE GREEN DRAGON, as the name suggests, depicts youngsters at the crossroads of their lives. The book depicts the crime and discrimination faced by young people, as well as poverty and many other social issues in a very real way. The book contains great sadness, but at the same time it is very hopeful and gentle.”

- Reetta Niemelä, author

Download reading materials

Rights sold:
FINLAND: Tammi (orig.)

About author

Leena Lehtolainen

Leena Lehtolainen is the top female crime author in Finland: her new titles always head straight to #1 on the Finnish bestseller lists.

Lehtolainen created her successful protagonist, detective Maria Kallio, in 1993. Having already featured in 16 novels and a complete TV series, a new Maria Kallio TV reboot series was launched in Fall 2021 on C More. Lehtolainen’s novels have been translated into 30 languages and have sold over 2.5 million copies worldwide.

And just like the events in Bodyguard, a that takes the heroine Hilja Ilveskero all around Europe, Lehtolainen’s own work takes her to book festivals, exhibitions and other events across the globe.

Leena Lehtolainen has also published outside the crime genre; her book The Charm of Figure Skating was voted sports book of the year 2010 in Finland, and A Life in Six Scenes showed her return to literary fiction.

The Crossing of the Green Dragon is her first title for YA audiences.

In her free time, Lehtolainen enjoys all kinds of music and follows lynx trails in the forests – just like Maria Kallio.


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