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Johannes Anyuru (born 1979) is a poet and novelist. He debuted in 2003 with the critically acclaimed collection of poems Only The Gods Are New. His 2017 novel, They Will Drown in Their Mothers' Tears, was awarded the August Prize for Best Fiction and has been sold to 17 territories. Anyuru's work has been likened to a mix between Nobel Laureate Thomas Tranströmer and a hip-hop MC.

Anyuru's fourth novel, Ixelles, was published in 2022. 

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De kommer att drunkna i sina mödrars tårar
As always, Johannes Anyuru writes an incredibly rhythmic, lyrical and image-rich prose which despite the ongoing violence is also devastatingly beautiful and suggestive. /… / Then again, it is a novel written from within literature itself. It is Walter Benjamin meets Paul Virilio, meets Donna Haraway, it is streams of consciousness full of verve and slang, mixed with hearty, lust-filled doses of Harry Martinson’s space epos Aniara. Goddamnit, it is an author who has managed to surpass himself.
De kommer att drunkna i sina mödrars tårar
… a scorching contemporary novel, portraying several of the most frightening tendencies of the present: above all how fear and hatred always interplay, and how right now they breed and feed terrorism and fascism. /… / This is a novel that you can read on different levels at the same time. “The Rabbit Yard” is political pamphlet, futuristic dystopia and a personal book of thoughts all at once. Above all it shifts my gaze just enough so that I can see the here and now in a new way, or rather, it makes me feel and understand the present in another way. /… / The novel becomes an almost physical experience – a fist punch. I wish this novel reaches a wide audience. It has a message that is more than pressing, and it succeeds with what all great art should do – to change and deepen the image of reality.
De kommer att drunkna i sina mödrars tårar
The Rabbit Yard is just as urgently incisive as the present situation. You need to try to understand. You need to think. You need to talk. Otherwise, we will all drown in the future tears of our children. /… / An overwhelming tale of our time.
De kommer att drunkna i sina mödrars tårar
Anyuru shifts from the outset as a contemporary political thriller, to a visionary, futuristic dystopia, kindred with Orwell’s 1984 and Harry Martinson’s Aniara. /…/ The story takes my breath away. It is the poet Johannes Anyuru’s nuance-rich language that makes this time travel possible. In it there is room for worry, sorrow, dreams, melancholy, anger, beauty and also openings towards the unspeakable and unknown. /…/  Johannes Anyuru’s elaborate tale of the future is chilling, and like all dystopian futuristic novels, it concerns our own time. His novel, both poetically as well as politically, cuts right through our problematic present, with ISIS, terrorism, right-wing extremism and nationalism, yet it ends in the assurance that we can influence our future to take a completely different direction. Therein lies the hope of the novel.


Johannes Anyuru and Anneli Jordahl Shortlisted for the August Prize

We are proud and excited to announce that Johannes Anyuru's Ixelles and Anneli Jordahl's The Bear Hunter's Daughters have both been shortlisted for the August Prize in the Best Fiction category. Here are the jury's motivations for the nominations: Ixelles: Fictive destinies is a capital that can ru...

Photo: Magnus Liam Karlsson

Johannes Anyuru's Novel Praised in the US

Earlier this month Johannes Anyuru's award-winning novel They Will Drown in Their Mothers' Tears was published in the US and the early buzz seems to have attracted the reviewers' attention. In the New York Times, Hari Kunzru calls it "a state of the nation" novel for a country that se...

Mercies May

Johannes Anyuru's "They Will Drown in Their Mothers' Tears" - A Lit Hub Most Anticipated Book

It won't be officially released until the beginning of November, but the forthcoming US edition of Johannes Anyuru's They Will Drown in Their Mothers' Tears is already picking up attention. Lit Hub's executive editor John Freeman has highlighted Anyuru's prize-winner as one of his mo...

Khim Efraimsson

Johannes Anyuru's "The Rabbit Yard" Set for the Silver Screen

Production company Momento Film have acquired the film rights for Johannes Anyuru's award-winning novel The Rabbit Yard. It will be directed by Goran Kapetanovic and the producer also states that Anyuru will be involved in the scriptwriting process. The movie is scheduled to premiere ...

Khim Efraimsson
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