Karin Erlandsson’s The Pearl Fisher nominated for the Children’s Novel Prize in Sweden

The Pearl Fisher, the first book in Karin Erlandsson’s magical series The Song of the Eye Gemstone is nominated for the Children’s Novel Prize in Karlstad, Sweden!

Five novels are competing for the prize that was founded in 2013, by the Karlstad City Library’s Children’s and YA department. The idea was inspired by the Swedish national radio programme Children’s Novel Prize (Barnens Romanpris).

The five nominees are chosen by the city library’s and municipality libraries’ staff. The books will be presented to the school children in various library workshops during the autumn semester, and the reading will continue till December, when each participating class will be organising a vote.

Erlandsson’s series gained a huge popularity among the Finland’s readers, and is often likened to such children literary classics as Tove Jansson and Astrid Lindgren. The Pearl Fisher was the winner of the prestigious Runeberg Junior Prize in 2018, and the books of the series are so far sold to Bulgaria, Estonia, Faroe Islands and Sweden.

Have a look at the wonderful video with the author presenting her book in a beautiful landscape of Åland! Here you can also find a short interview with her in English.

Congratulations to the author and fingers crossed!

Juhani Karila nominated for Jarkko Laine Literature Prize

Juhani Karila’s hilarious novel Fishing for the Little Pike is nominated for the Jarkko Laine Literature Prize!

The novel, that was unequivocally dubbed by the critics as the best Finnish novel of 2019 and raised an overwhelming interest among the foreign publishers, is competing with 5 other nominees.

Finnish major newspaper Helsingin Sanomat has stated about the book:

The novel, peppered with small side stories, delights with the avalanche of mythical creatures, but even better is the gently ironic description of local people. The dialectal language of the colourful characters and their balmy reactions to what happens paint a picture of a worldview where even the most fanciful things are taken as they are.”

Jarkko Laine Literature Prize is given every second year to the most extraordinary and challenging fiction work published in the last three calendar years. The prize is 10,000 euros, and the winner will be announced on the 26th of September.

Karila’s novel has been so far sold to Canada (World French), Denmark, Hungary and Poland, and running the third print in Finland. It also won The Kalevi Jäntti’s Literature Prize and Tähtifantasia Literature Prize earlier this year.

Congratulations to the author and fingers crossed!

Helsinki Literary Agency recruits Arela and Aareleid

Helsinki Literary Agency has strengthened its team with the recruitment of two new literary agents.

Viivi Arela joins the agency at the beginning of July, followed by Kai Aareleid in August.

Since 2014, Arela has worked as communications director of the Finnish fashion brand Arela. She will continue to work part-time as public relations officer and events director for the Finnish Literary Institute. At Helsinki Literary Agency, she will enhance the visibility of the books and authors represented by the agency and add to and develop the content relating to the titles.

Aareleid is an Estonian writer and translator whose novel Burning Cities has been published in several languages. She has also translated numerous books into Estonian. At the Helsinki Litarary Agency, Aareleid will concentrate on selling rights and maintaining and developing new relationships with publishers. In addition to her work with the Helsinki Literary Agency she will continue writing her new novel and translating.

‘I am delighted to be welcoming two such experienced professionals in the worlds of communication and literature to the Helsinki Literary Agency,’ said chief executive Urpu Strellman.

‘Over the first half of this year, which has been extremely unusual in terms of literary export, we have, together with literary agent Urtė Liepuoniūtė, developed many new tools for the promotion of Finnish books abroad. With the help of the expertise brought by Arela and Aareleid, we will take these projects considerably further, and will also be able to try completely new methods. Above all, their know-how will significantly strengthen the position of the Finnish Literary Agency within Finland and internationally.’

The Helsinki Literary Agency was founded in 2017 and functions under the joint ownership of the publishing houses Gummerus, Schildts & Söderströms, Siltala and Teos. The Agency represents the rights of dozens of authors, including  Seija Ahava, Kari Hotakainen, Mikko Rimminen and Ulla-Lena Lundberg.

Thank You for the Book, Antti Rönkä!

Antti Rönkä’s debut novel Off the Ground was awarded Thank You for the Book Prize 2020!

The prize is given out yearly since 1966, for a book that is considered to have caused the biggest intellectual and/or emotional stimulus to the readers during the past year. The winner is decided upon jointly by The Booksellers’ Association in Finland, Association Libro ry and Finnish Library Association.

As the jury stated:

Antti Rönkä’s confident debut demonstrates thought patterns of a bullied person that may seem absurd to the outsider, but to the one experiencing them, it is the reality. The unspeakable burden of traumatic experiences are heavy on the reader’s mind. Precise sentences expose things laying underneath the surface in a strong voice, without exaggeration.

(…) The author skilfully portrays various feelings and processes of the mind. The book won’t leave a person unmoved.”

Off the Ground is a powerful debut novel, long-listed for the Runeberg Prize. It describes the experiences of a grown up man starting a new life in a new city, but haunted by memories and traumas of bullying suffered in the past. Earlier this year, World French rights were sold to Payot & Rivages.

Congratulations, Antti Rönkä, and thank you for your extraordinary book!