The setting is the early 1980s, in a small town on the west coast of Sweden. Here Nella and her brother Robert live with their parents under harsh circumstances. Robert is being badly harassed at school, and Nella has to go into debt to save her younger brother from his tormentors.
“At its heart, it is a wonderful character-driven story. As Nella is drawn deeper into the plot, the more the reader is drawn in along with her. The emotional immediacy of it all makes for an enveloping adventure on a very human scale.
“..an intense little gem… when the Merman enters the scene, Vallgren succeeds – against all the odds – in shifting social realism towards the metaphysical. It takes a brave literary hand to do that sort of thing, and he’s still got it. And he succeeds. The Merman remains genuinely readable right up to the very end.“
“How does one mix Swedish hyperrealism – the neglect and bullying of small children in the state – with a beast straight out of the fantasy genre? The answer is quite simply ‘art’, it cannot be explained in any other way. The writer manages here to do what only great writers can do… From here on I will be reading all of Vallgren’s books..“
Dutch rights sold to De Geus
English UK rights sold to Hesperus Press
French rights sold to JC Lattès
Italian rights sold to Longanesi
Korean rights sold to Hyundaemunhak
Russian rights sold to sold to Ripol
Turkish rights sold to Metis
Us rights sold to Pegasus
Phone: +46 709 30 62 50
16 December 2015