A novel of greed, love, and the price of dreams
In the end, who pays the bill for someone’s happiness?
Susanne has ordered a baby from India and it is Padma’s task to give birth to it. Padma’s son Sani dreams of a pair of football boots and a new ball, but they can only be realized after the baby has arrived.
TV meteorologist Peter has been taken off the air. He’d give anything to be able to stand in front of the weather map again and forecast the arrival of a heatwave. Seasons are capricious in the Nordic countries: for six consecutive years, the spring has given way directly to the autumn, without the much-awaited bliss of summer in between. Will the seventh spring finally usher in the summer? After years of waiting and hoping, will your dreams eventually come true?
The Seventh Spring is a scorching portrayal of the world where even small choices lead to significant consequences. The hopes and fates of seven individuals far from each other are intertwined in a surprising way. Planning and yearning, each of them looks expectantly to have their dreams fulfilled, but in the end life surprises them all.
Tiina Laitila Kälvemark’s intriguing novel takes the reader to remote corners of the world: from Scottish parks and from Indian surrogacy clinics to luxury homes in Stockholm and to a certain log cabin in Northern Finland. The Seventh Spring is a study of greed, of love and of the price of dreams. Who will pay the final bill and for whose happiness?
2017 Shortlisted for Bothnia Prize
“In Tiina Laitila Kälvemark’s episodic novel, summers seem to have disappeared for good due to climate change. The story, set in an unspecified and frighteningly probable near future, is told from the perspectives of seven people who are connected to one another in different ways. The result is an enjoyable puzzle, a story full of interruptions and gaps, allowing the reader to experience the joy of finding the missing pieces.” – Statement of the Bothnia Prize Jury
“Laitila Kälvemark is a master of summarising the essential: the reader can fill in the blanks with their own intuitions. Only flashes of the characters are shown, much remains behind the curtain. The style is even more compact than that of Lena Andersson, but it is impressive in the same way. The reader’s curiosity and interpretation are guided only through hints, but the hints hit you like a sledgehammer.” – Helsingin Sanomat newspaper
“Laitila Kälvemark’s first novel Karkulahti, which was published the year before last, already revealed the particularly touching way in which the writer views people: realistically but with love – at the same time gloomily and with warmth. Amidst all that is ugly and cold, The Seventh Spring also exudes hope and a feeling of anticipation: all of the narrators seem to believe that something better is still ahead.” – Aamulehti newspaper, Finland
“In Tiina Laitila Kälvemark’s novel, arrows of irony fly in many directions. (…) The Seventh Spring reveals its characters’ pasts in small, stimulating doses.” – Kaleva newspaper, Finland
“The Seventh Spring is a fascinating and significant novel, undoubtedly one of the best of this year in books.” – Lukukausi literary blog
“Tiina Laitila Kälvemark is such a skilful writer that the interplay of text and story flow like the awakening of spring each year; in winter, everything is dead, but the spring brings it to life.” – Kirjasähkökäyrä literary blog
“Tiina Laitila Kälvemark has created an influential work about human greed (…) Tiina Laitila Kälvemark has written a brilliant novel about a topical theme. – We live as though the party is still going on, even though our mascara is already on our cheeks.” – Me Naiset magazine
“The Seventh Spring is a refined, precise novel with a tattered structure. As a spacer between each chapter, there is text from an essay on climate change, and snippets from different perspectives reveal the secrets of the different characters. I feel privileged to read them, as the language caresses me with its clarity and openness.” – Tuijata literary blog
“[Laitila Kälvemark]’s narrative has the ability to reach and capture our time, with its people, phenomena and directions of development.” – Annelin kirjoissa literary blog