World English, Estonian and Czech rights sold for Secret Gardeners

Splendid books never fail to draw immediate attention from foreign publishers. The beautiful nonfiction for children, Secret Gardeners, written by Lina Laurent and illustrated by Maija Hurme, was published in Finland only some weeks ago, and we already made some fantastic foreign rights deals.

Secret Gardeners (2021)

World English rights were acquired by Pajama Press, a well-known and established publisher based in Toronto, Canada. Their books are largely distributed in the entire continent of North America, as well as other English language markets. Pajama Press is a dedicated publisher of children’s and YA books, and extremely successful in the school and public library markets. The publisher’s titles regularly win awards, and it has a growing track record of titles shortlisted to regional reader’s choice awards.

In Estonia, the title will be published by the wonderful Ühinenud ajakirjad, that continues to introduce quality Finnish literature to Estonian readers. The publisher has previously acquired both Finlandia Prize winners of 2020, Anni Kytömäki’s novel Margarita and Anja Portin’s children’s novel Radio Popov.

Last but not least, Czech rights were acquired by Host, one of the most prestigious publishing houses in the country. Host is especially proud of its lists of contemporary Czech fiction, as well as translated literary fiction and crime. The publisher has introduced Czech readers to such international grands as Stieg Larsson, Henning Mankell, Jeffrey EugenidesOlga TokarczukChimamanda Ngozi Adichie and others. Its strong children’s list includes such beloved authors as Timo Parvela, Maija Lunde and J. D. Rinehart. Host has also recently acquired the rights of children’s novel The Night Express by Karin Erlandsson & Peter Bergting.

Congratulations to the authors, we are sure many more deals will follow soon!

Hotakainen’s Finlandia-winning Trench Road sold to Slovenia

More foreign rights sales news: Kari Hotakainen’s spectacular bestseller from 2002, Trench Road, has been sold to KUD Sodobnost in Slovenia.

Trench Road (2002)

At the time, the novel was awarded the most prestigious literary award in the country, Finlandia Prize, as well as the Nordic Council Literature Prize; the Slovenian acquisition makes it the 19th foreign territory for the book altogether. The novel has been praised for its “critical linguistic instinct” and for the ability to portray “the misery of modern life sympathetically and with inverted verbal humour, but also with melancholy”; all the clichés in “how great life is” are met with observation and with the revelation of how bad things really are.

The warmly humorous novel tells a story of one Matti Virtanen, whose life is changed by a single strike, after which his wife and daughter leave him.

Belonging to a generation of men who have proven their commitment to equality by doing their fair share of household, cooking and childcare tasks, losing the family breaks the spine of Matti’s existence. He feels he needs to gain his family back to gain back also his role in life.

To succeed, Matti starts fulfilling his wife’s dream of a house. His obsession drives him to excesses, and soon there is no turning back.

KUD Sodobnost is one of the best-known publishers in Slovenia, with the list of carefully selected, award-winning titles. It publishes fiction, poetry, as well as children’s and YA books. It also follows the Finnish market closely, picking the best authors for their list.

Congratulations to the author!

New co-agency in Italy, partner Casanovas & Lynch takes over Brazil

With the speedy growth of foreign rights sales, Helsinki Literary Agency is happy to enhance its operations with the help of exquisite partners worldwide.

Agents (illustration by Sanna Mander)

The esteemed Piergiorgio Nicolazzini Literary Agency (PNLA) will now have exclusive rights to represent our titles in Italy. PNLA has worked with an impressive list of Italian publishers, representing foreign authors on the home front. We are very excited about this new cooperation, as it will without a doubt help HLA bring Finnish literature to even more Italian publishers! 

Additionally, our long-term partner Casanovas & Lynch Literary Agency will from now on have exclusive rights to represent our authors in the entire Portuguese world, including Brazil. Casanovas & Lynch has done extraordinary work in the recent years regarding drawing the attention of Spanish and Catalan language publishers to literature from Finland, so we are confident the new expansion will encourage even more translations.

We thank all our partners for their fantastic work and are excited to see what is waiting for us in the future!

See our website for contact information and full list of our exclusive co-agents.

Offer from Denmark for detective Anna Glad series

The summer might have begun for some, but we at HLA are busy, busy, busy selling rights! We are thrilled to announce that we now have an offer from DENMARK for the beloved crime series by Eva Frantz featuring police detective Anna Glad. This lovely – and somewhat unlikely – detective has featured three books: The Blue Villa (2017); the Crime Novel of the Year winner The Eighth Maiden (2018); and the most recent one, Out of the Game (2020).

Eva Frantz foto: Marica Rosengård

The series has been previously sold to Estonia (Rahva raamat) and Sweden (Sekwa), and has done incredibly well on the home front: with praising reviews and over 55,000 copies sold in Finland, Glad remains one of the favourite police investigators among the readers.

Frantz recently discussed the character and creating suspenseful plots on Literature from Finland podcast fabulous episode ATMOSPHERES, which can be found on any of the usual platforms.

The Danish publisher will be announced next week; in the meantime, the rights are still available in many other territories, so don’t hesitate to get in touch with us ( for the English materials: we have a great package for all three books.

Quite a few other explosive deals are now under negotiations, so keep following us for more information!

Radio Popov sold to 14 territories

The Finlandia Prize winner of 2020, Radio Popov by Anja Portin, continues its spectacular journey around the world.

Anja Portin and Radio Popov

World Spanish and Catalan rights were acquired by Nórdica Libros, a beautiful publishing house based in Madrid, with an emphasis on literature from the Nordic countries. It is the publisher of Maria Parr, Knut Hamsun, Kjell Askildsen, Vigdis Hjorth and Edith Södergran, among others, and is proud of its strong list of children’s authors and illustrators. We thank for the deal our partners in the Spanish world, Casanovas & Lynch.

Meanwhile, Slovenian rights were acquired by Sodobnost, one of the best-known publishers in the area, with the list of carefully selected, award-winning titles. Sodobnost publishes fiction, poetry, as well as children’s and YA books. It also follows the Finnish market closely, picking the best authors for their list – Aino Havukainen & Sami Toivonen, Kaisa Haponen & Anne Vasko, Sinikka & Tiina Nopola, among others. The deal was made with the help of our partners Livia Stoia Literary Agency.

The new deals mean that Radio Popov has now been sold to 14 territories altogether, a solid number for any author to be proud of. Portin’s success is not surprising though, given that her moving and adventurous book speaks to audiences of all ages. Radio Popov has been largely seen as a future children’s classic, which will be placed on the same shelf as Roald Dahl’s and Astrid Lindgren’s immortal books. Rest assured, more deals will follow soon, so don’t forget to keep up with the news!

Congratulations to the author and all her publishers!