“We are in the gym and I have a gun. from C”
Author: Vilja-Tuulia Huotarinen
Finnish original: Niin kuin minä heidät näin
Publisher: Siltala Publishing, 2018
Genre: literary fiction
Number of pages: 311 pp.
Reading material: Finnish original, English sample, German Sample
Six teenage girls have brought a gun to school. They are in the gym; they have stopped the time. They also have installed a hidden camera in the teacher’s lounge. This is going to go viral and become the internet spectacle of the century!
The teachers are agitated, running around and over each other, trying to follow instructions given by the police – and revealing their true nature in the due course. That is, teachers apart from the young principal Selena who has had a nighty fling with a youngster in one of the school’s storage rooms.
In the school gym, the girls have each other, and fifteen years of life experience. But one of them is missing.
As I Saw Them dives deep into the mindset of teenage girls and their teachers. When the secrets, memories and dreams of the teachers and pupils clash, the result is a supernova with a lasting impact that no one can escape. As loves and friendships are lost, new ones are emerging. The big question turns out to be: who has the right to tell our story, and how is a story told in the 21st century in the first place?
Vilja-Tuulia Huotarinen’s ambitious novel is full of narrative surprises, structural novelties and timely themes. It is full of sound and fury, and it leaves the reader with an unforgettable story.
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