Date of release: 2019-01-23
Sold to: Arabic language: Dar al-Muna, Croatia: Hena, Czech Republic: Jota, Denmark: Modtryk, Estonia: Rahva Raamat, Finland: WSOY, France: Robert Laffont, Germany: Heyne Encore, Hungary: Polar, Iceland: Bjartur, Netherlands: Prometheus, Norway: Pax, Poland: Poznanskie, Russia: Ripol, Turkey: Zenon
Siri and Pentti Toimi run a small homestead in northern Finland. Pentti rules the family with an iron fist – a ferocious temper that can strike down on anyone at any time. Of their 12 living children, only Annie, Lauri, Tarmo and Voitto have moved away (physically and mentally), as far away as Stockholm, Helsinki and Cyprus (although no one knows for sure in Voitto’s case). The others remain in the Torne Valley: Esko, the conscientious oldest brother, who hopes to inherit the farm; Helmi, the sister in constant need of money (and lots thereof); Tatu, who almost perished when the garage took fire, and who is always ready to offer people a ride; Lahja, smarter than she lets on, but constantly in the shadow of her gifted brother Tarmo. And all the rest of them.
It’s almost Christmas, and most of the children have gathered for the preparations the days ahead. Something is going to happen – something must happen, that is something the eldest children all agree on. The dark secret that is the last straw. For the sake of their mother, the younger siblings, and the two that came first and died: Pentti’s tyranny must come to an end. It is time to settle old scores. Soon nothing will be the same.
Testament is a wondrous family drama: vibrant, boisterous and darkly amusing, carrying traits from Jonathan Safran Foer and Mikael Niemi. A polyphonic magnum opus, by a storyteller unlike anyone else.
WINNER OF SWEDISH RADIO'S LITERATURE PRIZE 2020
SHORTLISTED FOR THE AUGUST PRIZE 2019
SHORTLISTED FOR VI'S LITERATURE PRIZE 2020
SHORTLISTED FOR NORRLAND'S LITERATURE PRIZE 2020
SHORTLISTED FOR THE EYVIND JOHNSON PRIZE 2020
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