Riku Korhonen

Riku Korhonen’s (b. 1972) first novel, Two- and One-Night Tales, was awarded the Helsingin Sanomat prize for debut novel of the year in 2003; a play based on it opened at the Turku City eatre in January 2008. In 2010, Korhonen became the first Finnish author to receive the European Commission Prize for Literature, for his work Doctor Novel (2008). In the wake of Doctor Novel, two highly valued cultural prizes were awarded to Korhonen in 2008: the Kalevi Jäntti Prize for young authors and the Aboa Cultural Award.

In between his early novels, Korhonen published the critically well-recieved poetry collection Smoke Signals for those Considering Leaving (2005) which contains melancholy reflections on love, life, and death. Farewell, Girls! (2009) again refines the trademark style of his highly skillful prose, in which several stories intertwine into one elaborate narrative. The love stories in this book are humorous and often absurd, like pop songs grown up wrong.

After his career as a Finnish teacher and a lecturer of creative writing, Korhonen is nowadays working as a full-time writer and columnist, well-known of his sharp, emotionally intelligent style.


Prizes and awards

2010 European Union Prize for Literature
2008 Kalevi Jäntti Prize for young authors
2008 Aboa Cultural Award
2003 Helsingin Sanomat Literature Prize for Best Debut of the Year



We Don’t Believe in Evil Anymore (Emme enää usko pahaan, WSOY 2016)
Sleep Close
(Nuku lähelläni, WSOY 2012)
Farewell, Girls! (Hyvästi tytöt, Sammakko 2009)
Doctor Novel (Lääkäriromaani, Sammakko 2008)
Smoke Signals for Those Considering Leaving (Savumerkkejä lähtöä harkitseville, poems, Sammakko 2005)
Two- and One-Night Tales (Kahden ja yhden yön tarinoita, Sammakko 2003)

Read a review of and a sample from Two- and One-Night Tales in Books from Finland online!


Praise for the Author

“Riku Korhonen (b.1972) made his literary debut in 2003 and has rapidly established himself as one of Finland’s pre-eminent writers. He writes about serious and important topics, but in an entertaining style that does not call attention to his narrative skill. The text flows despite the stories’ simultaneous literariness and technical mastery. Korhonen knows how to both amuse and astonish without superfluous devices. He has a gift for words, in which ordinary events and everyday experiences expand in scale as they transform from isolated incidents into general phenomena.” – From the Statement of the EU Jury