Swedish Novel Racks Up Foreign Sales
What We Owe by Swedish author Golnaz Hashemzadeh Bonde, represented by the Ahlander Agency, has sold to 12 countries. It has been bought by, among others, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (U.S.), Little Brown UK/Fleet, Otava (Finland), and Luitingh-Sijthoff (Netherlands). Wahlström & Widstrand will publish in Sweden this August. The book follows a woman named Nahid who moves to Sweden from Iran, where she had been a Marxist revolutionary in the 1980s. Having just been diagnosed with cancer in her late 40s, she must grapple with resentments, and disappointments about how her life has turned out.
Italian Novel Sells in Germany
Italy’s MalaTesta Literary has sold The Blue Nights by Chiara Marchelli to btb/Random House Verlag in Germany. The book was published in Italy in March by indie house Perrone Editore, and is a finalist for the 2017 Strega Award. It's about a long-married husband and wife struggling with grief in the wake of the death of their only child, who committed suicide. The couple's life is further upended when a woman shows up claiming their son has a child, and she is the mother.
Finnish Lifestyle Book Sells in U.S.
The Nordic Kiss by Katja Pantzar, which is represented by Elina Ahlback of Elina Ahlback Literary Agency, has sold in the U.S. to TarcherPerigee. At press time, 11 publishers had acquired rights to the book, which we reported on in April, and is about the Nordic concept of "sisu." The Finnish-born author, who was raised in Canada and discovered sisu when she moved back to Finland, described the practice as "a unique type of resilience and perseverance in the face of adversity.” TarcherPerigee is planning to publish the book in April 2018.
Canadian Award-Winner Gains Traction in Eastern Europe
The novel Mysterious Fragrance of the Yellow Mountains by Yasuko Thanh has sold to RAO in Romania. Up for the Amazon.ca First Novel Award (which will be announced on May 25), the book was published in the author's native Canada in April 2016. Denise Bukowski of Canada’s Bukowski Agency represents the book, which was originally published by U.K.-based Hamish Hamilton/Penguin. Set in Vietnam during the time it was occupied by the French (1887-1954), the novel explores stories pulled from the author's family history.