Illustrator(s)
Publication date
2017
Publisher
WSOY
Format info
250 pages

The Seventh Spring

Seitsemäs kevät

In the end, who picks up the bill for another person’s happiness?

Susanne has ordered a baby from India and it’s up to Padma to give birth to it. Padma’s son, Sani, dreams of getting a pair of football boots and a new ball. But none of this can happen until after the baby has been born.

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 read out the weather forecast. Seasons in the Nordics are capricious: for six consecutive years, spring has turned into autumn, without the bliss of summer in between. Will the seventh spring finally usher in the summer? After years of waiting and hoping, will everyone’s dream come true?

The Seventh Spring is a scorching portrayal of a world in which even small choices have significant consequences. The hopes and fates of seven individuals come together in a surprising way. Each of these characters plans and yearns for their dreams to be fulfilled, but in the end life surprises them all.

Tiina Laitila Kälvemark’s intriguing novel takes readers to remote corners of the world: from Scottish parks and Indian surrogacy clinics to luxury homes in Stockholm and a log cabin in northern Finland. The Seventh Spring is a study of greed, love and of the price of dreams. Who will settle the final bill?

Tiina Laitila Kälvemark (b. 1970) is a Stockholm-based journalist and writer, originally from northern Finland. Laitila Kälvemark’s debut work Lost Shore—a short story collection—was shortlisted for the Runeberg Prize in 2013. Her debut novel, Of Stones and Silence, was met with acclaim and shortlisted for the 2015 Tiiliskivi Prize. Laitila Kälvemark’s short-form fiction has been published in both English and German.

Material

Finnish PDF
Swedish sample translation 22pp

Rights sold

Turkish (Yeni İnsan Yayınevi)

Prizes and nominations

2018, Shortlisted for the Finnish Literary Export Prize
2017, Shortlisted for the Bothnia Prize

Reviews

“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 Of Stones and Silence… 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 still lies ahead.”Aamulehti newspaper

“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

The Seventh Spring is a fascinating and significant novel, undoubtedly one of the best of this year in books.” Lukukausi 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 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 blog

“[Laitila Kälvemark]’s narrative has the ability to reach and capture our time, with its people, phenomena and directions of development.” Annelin kirjoissa blog